Better Alone Than In Bad Company


Man is basically a social creature. Right from the earliest days of primitive man up until present times, men have lived in company of other people. The tendency of people to live together is called the ‘herd instinct’ and it is encapsulated in the saying ‘no man is an Island.’ Even the primitive hunter-gatherer societies were essentially gregarious. Why this social nature? It is essentially a survival instinct. In the wild conditions in which primitive men existed, it was safer to be in each other’s company than being alone. For instance, wildlife experts say that lions have a greater hunting success rate than the rather more powerful tiger simply because they hunt as a pride rather than as lone individuals which is the case with tigers. So, natural law of survival favours social rather than solo lives. This basic social instinct in man gave rise to all sorts of associations with varying degrees of intimacy. Some of these associations such as the family are based on natural factors such as blood relationships while others like trade associations and friendship with others are based on human invention or borne out of the necessities of human socio-economic development. However, while it is often desirable to be in company of others, it is better to be alone than in a bad company.

Most People hate Loneliness

It has been established by psychologists and social scientists that man’s strong natural instinct for fellowship and even intimacy with other men creates a natural fear or anxiety of loneliness or being alone. Loneliness has been clinically proven to create all sorts of anxiety syndrome and even depression among men. As a natural consequence of this, most people would do whatever they can to avoid loneliness.

Why being Alone is better than being in a Bad Company

The problem with human fellowship or association is that like every other phenomenon, it has its negative side. In other words, there is good and there is bad company. Human beings influence one another through association. This influence could be positive or negative depending on the personalities and character of the individuals involved. The power of this mutual influence is so much that it is life defining in most cases. So many celebrities and successful people today usually point to a certain figure in their life who at one time or the other influenced them towards great achievement. Similarly, many among convicted criminals remembers one or two individuals who influenced them negatively to take the wrong route in life. One could easily become a terrorist, criminal or something worse simply by spending time with the wrong company. Anyone can easily make a wreck of his or her life by associating with the wrong people. When you consider the potential for a bad company to destroy one’s life, you would agree that it is certainly better to be alone than in bad company.

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