Loneliness or Alone?

“I feel so lonely.”

At some point in our lives, I think we have all found ourselves saying or thinking this. I mean, I found myself thinking this for long periods of time, and was always mad because I couldn’t figure out why I was lonely in the first place. Like why do I feel this way when I have everything going for me? What’s missing? And how will I figure out what it is that will make me feel peace?

I think that a lot of people associate loneliness with the absence of a physical person, pet, or even possibly a place. But at the same time, we read about monks in Tibet reaching something called “enlightenment,” with basically nothing, but the clothes on their backs.

I think that loneliness is when we attribute a part of our lives to something of physical value, such as a person, place, or thing, in hopes that it will satisfy our need for peace in our lives.

If we do this, and I think almost everyone associates their happiness with a loved one or a pet or something of that nature, we risk the possibility of losing sight of who we are when that very thing goes away. And yet, life goes on.

Something to remember is that it is okay to do this. We can feel this way. It’s a part of who we are. When my dog died, I cried and missed the hell out of him. That’s life. We all experience this.

But there is a difference between being lonely, and being alone.

So, here is where things can get mixed up. Being alone versus being lonely are two very different things.

The feeling of being alone can disguise itself into making us think that we are lonely, but it turns out that we are just given more time to ourselves than we are normally comfortable with. Like when we go through a tough breakup, at first there is an overwhelming sense of loneliness, which is rightly justified. But after a year or more in some cases, we still can find ourselves turning to thoughts that life was so much better when our ex was around. Was it though? Probably not.

Being alone is a common occurrence, and I think people need to realize that. When we find ourselves ALONE, we need to get busy. We need to find something to occupy our time. This is so important because at this point in our lives, we have the opportunity to expand ourselves and learn new things, take a new class, go on a new trip, and learn more about who we really are.

We get so caught up in our own self reflection of how we have nothing to do or no one to spend time with that we miss out on these opportunities. And it is SO IMPORTANT that we take advantage of this time because when that next chapter in our life does come along, we have a better sense of who we are, and with that we can share with others.

Don’t let the feeling of being alone make you think that you are lonely. Take a moment to understand where you are at this moment in your life, and really reflect on what’s making you feel this way. Is it justified loneliness, or just feeling alone?

Take back your life, your solidarity, and use it to your advantage. Find happiness and peace in yourself, by yourself, and let that flower bloom when it comes time to share that with others. It will be beautiful. Trust me.

Published by thementalhealthminute

The Mental Health Minute was started as a way for individuals to come together and talk about their own mental health struggles, as well as seek advise from others on how to deal with these areas of their life.

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