Being lonely seems to be attributed to the concept of literally being alone. Nevertheless, loneliness is a complex feeling; a state of the mind where one feels unwanted, empty, and unloved. It is a feeling which has an impact on one’s health. As a matter of fact it is associated with higher stress levels, heart problems, drug addictions, depression, brain changes and loss of memory (Cherry, 2021).
Loneliness can result from the death of a loved one, from moving to a new place, or can also be a symptom of depression as one isolates oneself due to the condition and hence ends up feeling lonely (Cherry, 2021). Nonetheless, the above mentioned scenarios have a physical reason for one’s loneliness. There are other circumstances when one might be in the presence of others and still feel alone.
What contributes to loneliness?
Technology is one of the contributors to loneliness as it changes the way one interacts with the world. The internet is dominating the world and it is a common occurrence to see individuals on their phones while having dinner or while they are in the company of others (Katz, 2020). Therefore, it distracts one from the company of their loved ones and hence can leave one to feel undesired and feeling lonely when not alone. Nevertheless, low self-esteem and communication problems could also enhance the feelings of loneliness. Hence, one might wonder how to overcome such feelings.
Tips to stop feeling lonely when you’re not alone
If one is feeling lonely even in the presence of others, it is important to communicate how one is feeling. This is because one might be unaware of the impact that one’s actions are having on another. Therefore, openly discussing how one is feeling unimportant due to the other’s actions might help gain perspective and thus improve the situation (Cherry, 2021).
Allocating quality time
Technology-free time is important in order to enhance relationships. During this time, one can focus on shared values, hobbies, and communication. This in turn makes one feel important and loved while diminishing the feeling of loneliness (Cherry, 2021).
While it is true that one might be experiencing loneliness as a result of their loved ones’ lack of attention, low self-esteem could also contribute to one’s loneliness. Having low self-esteem could possibly lead one to require more attention and thus might feel lonely due to one’s perception of how others are treating oneself (Cherry, 2021).
Focus on the positive
Loneliness is a state of mind and can come from constant contemplation about feeling rejected. Therefore, focusing on quality relationships and engaging in positive thoughts can also help improve social relationships.
Seek other alternatives
Establishing other means to fulfil oneself is important. This could include making new friends and joining groups of interest in order to enlarge one’s circle and reduce alone time (Cherry, 2021).
If you think that you can benefit from professional support on this issue you can reach out here.
Yasmine Bonnici graduated in Nursing and also completed her Masters in Counselling. She has worked with victims of domestic violence, clients dealing with suicidal ideations, bereavement, separation and anxieties. She is currently working with Willingness Team as a counsellor seeing clients who would like to explore their own identity and deal with any surfacing issues.
Cherry, K. (2021). The Health Consequences of Loneliness. Verywell Mind. Retrieved 22 February 2022, from https://www.verywellmind.com/loneliness-causes-effects-and-treatments-2795749.
Katz, L. (2020). How tech and social media are making us feel lonelier than ever. CNET. Retrieved 22 February 2022, from https://www.cnet.com/news/features/how-tech-and-social-media-are-making-us-feel-lonelier-than-ever/.