Getting Beyond Loneliness

Getting Beyond Loneliness | Darling Magazine

There is a difference between being on our own and being lonely isn’t there? Many of us value the space in solitude…the chance to let our thoughts run, uninterrupted…the chance to reconnect with ourselves…the chance to unplug and recharge. So when does being alone turn to feeling lonely? How do we go from peaceful solitude to feeling lonely? There are few things more painful than the raw, empty pang of loneliness. The loneliness is a dark place in which we often turn on ourselves. We question who we are and we long to belong. On our own or in a crowd of people, feeling unseen, unheard, unnoticed, we wonder why: Am I not important enough? Am I not unique enough? Am I too much? Am I too little? Do I have what it takes to belong? This explains how we can feel most alone in a crowd of people. Whether you have just moved to a new area or struggle to reach out to others, it’s important that we seek to understand ourselves and connect with others in ways that ground us in community.

Look For Ways To Serve
You are gifted. I can say that confidently because we all have unique gifts to share with others. Looking for opportunities to share your gifts through service inevitably connects us with others. Working toward a common goal as a community empowers us to be vulnerable in a way that allows us to learn more about each other.

Pursue Others
We all long to be sought after and pursued. We all want to be noticed and accepted for who we are. In a lonely place, it can be easy to wait for others to pursue us. All too often we are inhibited by our own feelings about ourselves, assuming others are not interested in who we are. However, waiting for other people to do what we wish they would, will likely leave us feeling rejected and lonelier than we did in the first place. Instead, take a proactive approach and reach out to people that you’d like to get to know better. Offer to treat them to coffee and pursue a friendship.

Keep Showing Up
It can be easy to get discouraged when trying to form community. However, it is important to keep showing up to events or other opportunities you have to connect with others. Look for opportunities to get involved and reach out to people you may not know well.

Know Your Worth
Above all, know your worth and own your value. If you are someone who finds it more difficult to reach out, chances are a place to start is your relationship with yourself. When we doubt our worth and question our value, we project our feelings about ourselves onto other people, assuming others feel the same way when in reality we are holding ourselves back from relationship on the basis of false assumption. Knowing your worth and owning your value will empower you to have the confidence to reach out.

Relationships are arguably the most precious element of life. The element of life that is worth investing in and worth pursuing. We all long to be seen, heard, noticed and loved. Doing our part in cultivating these special relationships will likely lead us with the community we long for.

Image via The Yard

Nicole is a writer, speaker, Marriage and Family Therapist and recent east coast transplant where she lives with her husband Jimmy in Fairfield, CT. She loves to hear the hearts of others as a wife, daughter, sister, friend, and therapist and enjoys pouring her soul out on paper with honest talk about what it means to live fully and wholly. Learn more about her thoughts about relationships, joys, pains and the life in between on her website.

3 COMMENTS
  • CC August 4, 2013

    This is amazing. I moved to a new city about a year ago and I have struggled to find a “home church” where I feel accepted. But the truth is, I act like people don’t want to get to know me so I self sabotage. and end up feeling lonelier than before. This article spoke to me so much, thank you.

  • Tori June 25, 2013

    This spoke to my heart. I needed this. Thank you for sharing!

  • Tochi June 25, 2013

    What a great article! I especially love the first bit of advice – “look for ways to serve”. I think we’d all feel a lot better if we made a point of doing this more often.

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