Alone vs. Lonely? Do They Have The Same Meaning?
Some folks imagine lonely individuals lacking company. However, their isolation may stem from a lack of connection with people. They might share a house in a busy street amid the hubbub of life but still suffer from loneliness. Here’s what creates an absence of camaraderie and how to feel less alone. So we start by discussing alone vs. lonely followed by a guide to help you concur your situation.
What Makes People Lonely?
Whether you live with your family or share rented accommodation, you might experience loneliness. But what is alone vs. lonely? The sense of being alone is different from having nobody around you. It’s not as simple as occupying the same space with people or being able to swap comments over the dining table at dinnertime.
Loneliness often springs from the feeling of separation rather than isolation itself. Many people live alone and rarely see friends and family, but they don’t describe themselves as lonely. Some have hobbies they carry out happily by themselves. Others find solace in nature and recognize their connection with life.
Lonely people experience disconnection. At times, their isolation rises out of difficult circumstances–an unhappy marriage, divorce, or a feuding household. At others, the stark experience of segregation follows loss–the death of a spouse or grown-up kids leaving home.
In all cases, though, the lonely individual wants to fill a void inside they reserve for other people. Sometimes, they haven’t learned to love themselves and need folks around them to help them feel appreciated and loved since they can’t generate that experience alone.
There is, of course, a genuine innate desire for company, as humans thrive in groups rather than when apart. Extroverts, too, gain energy by spending time with people, their well-being plummets when alone for too long.
If you are an introvert, you’re less likely to be lonely than an individual who flourishes among crowds and finds purpose in their relationships more than in pastimes they do alone.
How To Feel Less Lonely
If you’re lonely, waiting for things to change won’t help; you must make them change by taking action. First, assess why you are lonely. Are you surrounded by people but find their presence oppressive? Suffering from a loss? An extrovert who needs more companionship. Or maybe you don’t know many people, as you’re new in town or your friends have drifted away.
You’re Lonely Because You Keep Negative Company
Bear in mind sometimes people are lonely, not because they need companions, but because they are stressed when with difficult folks. If the people you see most aren’t great company, consider who you know and like but don’t get in touch with much. Can you contact a friendly face? Perhaps a pal from the past will be happy to hear from you. Spend less time with negative people and carve out a haven too.
Find somewhere peaceful to de-clutter your head and relax. Create a calm sanctuary–a pretty area of the garden, in the swimming pool, the spare room, or a tranquil public place to visit will do.
You’re Lonely and Grieving
Sometimes loneliness goes together with grief. If someone you love is absent, you may have a sense of emptiness and sorrow. No one can take the place of your loved one and fill the void, but isolation might make matters worse.
Rather than making the pain disappear since one cannot rush grief, consider sharing with people going through a similar experience–a support group, perhaps, or a bereavement counselor may help. Also, can you turn to someone supportive in your local community?
Examine what gives meaning to your life and use it as succor. You’re not attempting to erase the past or dismiss your feelings, just to carry on in a positive way that reduces loneliness. If you love painting or gardening, for instance, join a class.
You’re Lonely Because Your Social Circle is Too Small
If your social circle is limited, it’s time to branch out. For example, do you pass the same people each day when you walk the dog or visit the shops? Smile and say hello. You never know, a conversation might follow and friendship. Likewise, do you suspect you have similar interests to a co-worker? Suggest you spend time together carrying out a shared hobby.
Local events like fetes, jumble sales, film nights, community theater, and coffee mornings provide instant ways to gradually spend time with people and build friendships. Similarly, joining local clubs and classes will put you in touch with people in your area, many of whom want to expand their social connections.
Don’t let loneliness defeat you. Stay alone too long, and you’ll forget how valuable you are, and your well-being will suffer. Someone, or many people, will be grateful for your company. Please make sure you put yourself in the proper position to meet them.
Considering a Divorce and Need Help?
If you find yourself lonely within your unhappy marriage and are seeking someone to speak to about divorce, the family law firm of Dalena & Bosch is here to help and guide you in the best direction. We know how challenging lonely relationships can be. Let us help you.