Tiny Talk Tuesday: Sonder


The word sonder has been one of my favorite words for a while now. It has such a beautiful meaning and gave me a new way of looking at life.

The word comes from The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows and means "the realization that each random passerby is living a life as vivid and complex as your own—populated with their own ambitions, friends, routines, worries and inherited craziness—an epic story that continues invisibly around you like an anthill sprawling deep underground, with elaborate passageways to thousands of other lives that you’ll never know existed, in which you might appear only once, as an extra sipping coffee in the background, as a blur of traffic passing on the highway, as a lighted window at dusk."

Before discovering this word I was always conscience of everything and everyone around me. I was always worried that people were watching and judging me, and it made me uncomfortable. But this word has given me a sort of comfort when going out. I remember that chances are no one is watching me because they're busy living their life. And even if someone is watching me, I shouldn't be too concerned with what they think of me because I'll probably never see them again. And when I remember these things I'm more willing to go after what I want or be passionate about things and not have to worry about judgement.

My feelings and thoughts for this word go beyond just me. I no longer feel the need to concern myself with others and what they're doing, or not doing. Because it doesn't concern me. They have their own lives to live and stories to create and I know very little or nothing at all about them and what makes them who they are. So, who am I to judge?

I can honestly say that this word is a big contributor to my growing confidence. But while my confidence levels are rising, my understanding of how complex others are is also increasing. And all this just makes me feel (a little bit) like a better person.

What's your favorite word and why?
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