All You Need to Know About Loneliness

Darryl Bachmeier
Jul 4, 2019
Emotions


Sometimes you need a break from a routine schedule or work and go to a beautiful place and be alone, to figure things out. However, if you develop a feeling of wanting to disappear and not wanting to be found, you could suffer from loneliness. Loneliness is not being alone; it’s a feeling that nobody cares. You can even be lonely in a crowd.

Most people think that loneliness affects the old folks and young lone kids alone, but it’s not.

Many adults feel they do not have a close friend they can confide in, and some feel unloved. Most people face a challenge in admitting their loneliness to family, colleagues, and friends.

But if you notice the following signs in an individual’ he/she could be suffering from loneliness.

Here’s how you tell if someone is lonely.

Spending a lot of time alone.

If you spend a lot of time alone, the chances are high that you could be lonely. If you always take lunch alone and wait for other people to reach out to you, you could be lonely. I know not everyone who sits by themselves is lonely. Some people love their own company.

Most people who feel they do not have friends at work would like to have some. And maybe an invitation for dinner could be all you need to get you started on your journey of making new friends.

Being too materialistic.

Do you know that loneliness and materialism are connected? If you are overly attached to some of your possessions, you could be a lonely soul. You know you are too attached to your property by letting the property determine your self-worth.

You also get a bit stressed when the object is not near you. Also, if you keep on purchasing complementary services or products, you could be lonely. If you dote on your car more than you dote on yourself, you are lonely.

If you are spending a fortune on car magazines, decals, garage space, and special cleaners while you can hardly treat yourself to a decent lunch, you are going through a lonely rough patch.

Loneliness can make you regularly buy expensive material things, as it’s like you are trying to fill up the void you feel in you.

So, if you abruptly find yourself obsessed with material possessions and you are shopping more than usual, you could be lonely.

Dwelling so much on the negative

When you feel lonely, you can get stuck in a series of meditative thoughts that negatively affect your emotional tone. If you regret your past, judging yourself as unworthy or unlovable, blaming others for your problems, and always expecting bad things to happen, you could be grappling with loneliness.

If you dwell on these negative things, you’ll always feel angry and shameful and avoid connecting with other people, ending up as a lone ranger. The loneliness feeling can stop you from getting the motivation you need to move past your problems or solve them all together.

Other symptoms of loneliness are:

  • reduced energy
  • feeling foggy or inability to focus
  • Sleep-related problems such as Insomnia and interrupted sleep
  • Loss of appetite
  • feelings of worthlessness, self-doubt, and hopelessness
  • Getting ill frequently
  • pains and body aches
  • feelings of restlessness or anxiousness
  • Suddenly increased shopping patterns
  • drug/ substance abuse
  • A growing desire to binge-watch movies or shows
  • yearnings for physical warmth- craving for hot baths or drinks, or warm clothes and blankets

Now that we know how to tell if you are lonely, let’s see what causes loneliness.

For certain people, some life events might cause loneliness. These events are:

  • Changing careers and then feeling isolated from your old co-workers
  • Starting at College or University
  • A military officer feels isolated after being deployed to a foreign country, leaving behind his family and friends.
  • Migrating to a new country or town and feeling isolated from the friends and family you had before moving.
  • Going on retirement and losing the social contact you enjoyed at work.
  • Going through a bereavement

How loneliness affects you

We all experience short-term periods of loneliness sometimes in our lives. For example, you can feel lonely when your spouse goes to work outside town for a few days or weeks. You also feel lonely when your kids go to college in another state. But you eventually get used to it. These types of feelings are usually brief and can’t be considered chronic.

When feelings of isolation and loneliness worsen and continue for a long time, you could be battling with chronic loneliness, which comes with a host of other severe symptoms.

What’s a Chronic Loneliness?

When you experience loneliness for a long time, it’s considered chronic. Although chronic loneliness and loneliness are not specified health conditions, they affect your general and mental health.

Chronic loneliness happens when feelings of uncomfortable social isolation continue for a long time. A persistent feeling of being alone, a constant feeling of being separated from others, and failure to connect with other people profoundly signifies chronic loneliness. When you are suffering from chronic loneliness, you always feel inadequate, you suffer from low self-esteem, and you hate yourself. How can you tell if you are suffering from chronic loneliness? Well, here are the signs.

Signs and Symptoms of Loneliness

  • Little or no interest in doing things- You feel like staying idle
  • Feeling down always- nothing seems to light up your spirits
  • feeling depressed or hopeless
  • Disrupted sleep patterns
  • Feeling tired most of the time and having little or no energy to try anything
  • little or no appetite resulting in loss of weight
  • Overeating hence you gain considerably
  • Difficulty concentrating even in things that don’t demand a lot of concentration
  • Low self-esteem- you think you are worthless and feel like nobody loves you
  • Suicidal thoughts - you feel like you do not want to live anymore

Constant feelings of loneliness can lower your cognitive skills. These skills are

  • Decision making
  • capacity to concentrate
  • Making decisions
  • Solving problems

Persistent feelings of loneliness and isolation can lead to depression, and it’s not something you wish to deal with.

Lack of meaningful connections often breeds loneliness. That’s why it’s easy to feel lonely, even in a crowd. You can have casual friends and occupy your time with many social activities, but cannot feel close to anybody. You can be happily single, but you can feel lonely if you spend a lot of time with families and couples.

Living with physical or mental health issues can make you feel lonely, as sometimes it can be challenging to explain your feelings.

If you are feeling lonely, there’s help for you. If only you can connect with other people more deeply, your loneliness will be a thing of the past. Here’s how you can make meaningful connections with people.

How to Connect With People Deeply

  • Have Meaningful conversations with other people- Talk more than just about the weather
  • Be Present- Avoid fiddling with your phone when you are speaking to somebody.
  • Be open to receiving different displays of love.
  • Pay attention to other people’s needs and show you care.
  • Be always grateful
  • Love unconditionally

Wrapping Up

Do not let loneliness get hold of you, as it can affect all aspects of your life. Get out of your house. Try a new hobby. Reach out to your loved ones and cultivate meaningful conversations. Change your beliefs about the world and love. Give and receive love in equal measure, and kiss loneliness goodbye.

Good riddance, loneliness!

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