Create a membrane around you. Deliberately decide on what you will let in that membrane, and what you will leave outside to observe remotely from the inside. Be conscious and aware on the specific moments that you will need to open this membrane, and beyond this moments, stay within the safety of that membrane.
It’s not about isolation. The message is to be conscious of what really matters, and what are simply extraneous. There are things in this world that we should just learn to accept, and yet with the acceptance, we should not force ourselves to believe it or to settle with it. There is an emotional management needed here. It’s simply not managable to remain frustrated and hate the world just because so many things around are personally unsettling. That’s simply self-torture. I realise that now.
Imagine a scene in the MRT. If one does not consciously create and stay in one’s membrane, all the frustrating Joes and Janes on the train or at the platform will just piss you off. There’s the person who does not want to spare some space, another who skips the queue, and yet another who stinks like hell. If you let yourself be affected by all these, it will drain all the physical and emotional energy from you. Stay in your bubble and just laugh everything off. They’re not supposed to be your problem.
Sometimes this also applies to more “personal” situations other than in public places. This can apply at work, in organisations, in social circles, or maybe even online and in social media. That’s what the “unfollow” and “hide” buttons are for, or the “unfriend” and “block” button for more extreme cases. We don’t have to react, comment, or be affected by all and anything that other people are saying or doing, even if it’s about you or about things related to you. Most importantly, if it’s something that you can’t change or if it’s realistically beyond your power or influence, better to just leave it alone or accept it as is, and just work around it.