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If loneliness has been bothering you, read this…

I’ve long questioned why people equate loneliness with being alone. When you’re by yourself, you don’t have any relationships with anyone, which fosters your uniqueness. You yearn for a self that existed in relation to someone when you’re lonely. Do you get what I’m saying? Loneliness is about missing what you previously had, not about the lack of people.

What is Loneliness?

The emotion we experience when our demand for fulfilling social interaction and connections is unmet is a frequent definition of loneliness. However, being lonely is not necessarily the same as being by yourself. Some people could find it isolating to be alone and have a happy life with little interaction from others.

Recommended Book: You Are Loved And You Belong Here

3 Types of Loneliness

Because loneliness has varied effects on different people, psychologists have distinguished three main forms of loneliness: emotional, social, and situational loneliness.

Emotional Loneliness

Dr. Spelman asserts that those who experience emotional isolation will find it challenging to make progress without addressing the underlying issue. “Emotional loneliness is not caused by external factors; rather, it is inside.” Dr. Spelman advises treatment to help address the underlying issue that is causing these feelings of emotional isolation. The best outcome is likely to result from working with a therapist and possibly using a technique like behavioural cognitive therapy or attending group therapy, according to her.

Social Loneliness

According to Dr. Spelman, “social loneliness is generally experienced by people who have difficulty interacting with others because of shyness, social awkwardness, or a poor sense of self-esteem that causes them to question their ability to be competent and amusing in social situations. Different strategies can be useful. For instance, if low self-esteem is the primary problem, addressing it first should have a positive effect. A good way to break a cycle of isolation is to try a structured approach to socializing, such as joining an online or virtual group that meets to discuss or practise a particular hobby.

Situational Loneliness

Since solo travel is on the rise and many millennials prefer to work abroad for a few years in their 20s and 30s, many of us have solo trips planned for after the coronavirus epidemic has passed. While these plans are definitely exciting, it may also be a moment of transition as we try to meet new people while also adjusting to a new culture and way of life, according to Dr. Spelman. This could result in situational loneliness.

Situational loneliness, according to her, can emerge from situations that make making friends challenging. Examples include those who live overseas, maybe in a country where they do not speak the language well, stay-at-home parents of young children, or people with physical or mental impairments who find it challenging to leave the house.

A Personal Experience

A few months after my last breakup, I wrote this in my diary: “being alone is wonderful; being lonely is bad.” I understand that loneliness has its own share of suffering and sadness, but what if I could, in retrospect, allow myself to see its bright side? If you’ve ever experienced loneliness, you’ve probably been fortunate enough to have something wholesome at some point in your life that you later missed. Right? That has to be significant.

We are all attempting to cling to sentiments and emotions that we hope don’t have expiration dates, so it is natural for us to seek significance in one another. But since life can be so challenging, there are moments when we are left to pick up the pieces and attempt to make sense of what we believed to be important. But why must meaning always be associated with durability? Yes, there is nothing like it if something turns out to be permanent, but does its value diminish if it doesn’t? Actually, no.

Imagine the power it must have possessed to make you feel alone after it was removed from you. That power demonstrates what you had rather than necessarily what you lost and can have once more.

Tell me, in the comment box, if you concur.

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