Do I look lonely in either of these pics surrounded by friends? What does the feeling of loneliness even look like?
I chose both of these pics bc they are from college, which for many of us (myself included) was a time in our lives where we felt anything but lonely – always on the go, always something to do (even if it was class/projects), always social gatherings at all hrs of the night…many ppl our age, living near one another, the gym & the cafeteria always full, etc.
Last Saturday, it was 3pm, I was on my couch watching TV, but I felt “alone.” I had friends I could call…fam I could go visit. But still, this overwhelming feeling of loneliness, even w my pup Oakley next to me, came over me & hit me hard.
If you remember a few wks ago, I did a post abt “whether boredom was good for us” bc it made our imagination run, & got us up & abt & off our butts. Piggybacking off that thought, & the loneliness feeling this wknd, the following question came to my mind:
“Is the feeling of loneliness, regardless of how many ppl we have arnd us in our lives, a survival mechanism that’s hardwired into us as humans, so that we don’t isolate?”
If you think abt it, this theory makes sense. I know there are times we don’t feel like being social, & we need alone time to decompress & “veg out.” At the same time, we know the possible negative consequences of isolating: spending too much time analyzing our own thoughts/getting anxious, not feeling comfortable asking others for help when we truly need it, getting depressed as we think abt what others are doing that we are not – vacations/brunches/parties, etc.
Reason I bring it up is, loneliness is a feeling most would describe as uncomfortable/something that we avoid. But maybe if we can flip it…maybe if we can welcome the feeling of loneliness, just momentarily, bc it prevents us from isolating, we can welcome it & know that it’s actually serving us, to make us get up, & visit (or make) friends/fam – which is actually HEALTHY for us. I’m gonna try to embrace it next time I feel it & see how it goes. If it works for you, let us know!