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How Overcrowding Shapes Human Behavior

An idea..

By Ha Le SaPublished 22 days ago β€’ 3 min read
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How Overcrowding Shapes Human Behavior
Photo by Nicholas Green on Unsplash

Consider yourself in a heavily packed city street, surrounded by people shouting and honking noisily, the tremendous heat bouncing off the pavement and each other. Imagine yourself being closed in on a small apartment which is crowded to the rafters with furniture, with nary a space left uncluttered, and a tense, dusty atmosphere. Overcrowding is a phenomenon which is gradually transforming our lives by pressing itself into our homes and cities. However, it is more than just a physical limitation; it is a powerful force that affects human behavior, often without our understanding.

Consider stress, a constant companion in busy environments. Think about how your cortisol levels rise with every heartbeat, with every raised voice, with every stress element. This constant fight-and-flight response causes a shorter, sharper tongue and increased anxiety. Anxiety and depression are the dark elements a human can face because of overcrowding as if trapped in a prison from which there is no escape from their attacks. Because of overcrowding, human minds suffer as well, with cognitive function dropping as the focus becomes an endangered force amid all the confusion.

In the realm of congestion, privacy, that vital human necessity, becomes a transitory luxury. Walls are thin, secrets are lost, and personal space is reduced to a fraction. In a desperate attempt to conceal our inner self from relentless observation, we withdraw and shun social connections. Overcrowding causes conflicts to flare up like sparks like dry tinder, propelled by the friction of crowded living quarters and opposing egos. In a sea of faces, our sense of individuality is annihilated leaving us feeling faceless and inconsequential.

Consider attempting to focus in a crowded office, when the bustle of discussion pervades every thought. Distractions abound, a phone notification here, a whispered discussion there. Creativity takes flight, but not in search of novel ideas; rather, it appears in clever ways to escape the noise, clutter, and mental overload. Job happiness fades, giving way to a dull ache of tiredness and frustration.

Shared experiences in congested places can develop community relationships, and a sense of belonging found in knowing we are not alone in this concrete jungle. As we learn to make the most of every inch of available space, we can see invention and resourcefulness blossom. Cities, with their many cultures and viewpoints, offer fertile ground for creation and interchange.

We create personal space not only in our physical surroundings but also in our digital lives. We seek solace in nature, the green balm calming our overworked minds and bodies. We create communities and strong support networks to help us weather the storms of claustrophobia and conflict. We simplify both our physical and emotional landscapes, creating pockets of tranquility among the chaos. Most importantly, we raise our voices in support of urban planning that promotes green spaces, walkable streets, and affordable housing.

Overcrowding is not a one-way street to doom. Overcrowding is an unavoidable truth, but it is not a fate we must accept. We can learn to coexist with it, and even thrive if we recognize its impact and embrace its promise. Remember that even in the most confined spaces, we can create oases of happiness and connection.

Let us take a deep breath, claim our space, and work together to create a future where everyone may find their own corner of comfort in this shrinking world.

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Ha Le Sa

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Comments (2)

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  • Mark Graham21 days ago

    How true. I have been told my room and 'library' are over-crowded with books. To me it is comfortable for these are the places I feel at home and for creative endeavors.

  • Thanks for sharing.

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