I often hear about or read articles on how lots of young men are shut-ins, spending a lot of time on the computer or playing video games. There are various discussions of whether this is good or bad, whether it was culture or economics or what-have-you which led to men leading deliberately sheltered lives when their ancestors couldn’t wait to strike out and go exploring. There's even a Vice column explaining how awesome it is to sit around and watch TV, primarily due to the fact that "going out" is too costly.
I'm going to leave aside the author's utterly false description of life in times past, and say:
Go outside, young man. Regularly, daily. Just do it, and leave the rationalizations for later. The TV programs and internet videos will all be there when you come back.
Do it without your phone or gadgets. Unless you're an EMT or someone who needs to be on call 24/7, you'll live without digital tools for an hour or so. Or more if you can stand it.
Go to different places. Go to the park and watch people go by. Chat with the guy at the grocery store. Get to know the neighbor down the block.
Do it in daytime, when possible. You spend that much time indoors and you likely have a serious Vitamin D deficiency. That's very bad for your health, physical and mental. Trust me when I say you do not want to wake up twenty years from now with all sorts of health problems you could have solved by taking a simple walk in the sun half an hour a day.
Practice introducing yourself to people—not virtual people or people also observing a screen or people you carefully select and screen through digital filters, but the random folks thrown at you in your neighborhood. And if you know everyone in your neighborhood, go to another one and get to know people there.
Just as social media is not a social life, the world of the internet can never replace the physical, tangible world of social relations in the boring "outside." The adventure you experience in the engineered world of scripted TV programs is nothing compared to the kaleidoscope of personal stories you will discover among the "boring," "ordinary" people you meet and who live near you if you get to know them well enough.
When you're inside, the world seems safe and utterly sheltered. Going outside is taking the ultimate risk. There you let go of complete control. You risk rejection, strange looks, odd encounters, maybe even an unpleasant experience or two.
But there are many good experiences you'll see, too. People who smile and become friendly. Lots of pretty women in the flesh rather than a digital picture. Old timers who can tell you about your place's history and buy you a drink (they can afford it, at least).
Enough hiding from the world. Go bold and go forth, young man, and may God be with ye!
Just a gaggle of people from all over who have similar interests and loud opinions mixed with a dose of humor. We met on Twitter.