Mental Health

Are you lonely or alone? Knowing the difference matters

By June 14, 2018 June 16th, 2018 No Comments

You can be alone without feeling lonely. Yes, you can be the only one chilling at your digs, but still be content. Being alone has to do with [not] being surrounded by people. This is not the case for loneliness. That’s because you can feel lonely even when in a crowded room. Loneliness is an emotional response to a particular situation that you may be facing. It is often also described as sadness.

If you have ever sat in a crowded room and felt sad and disconnected from others, that could be because you were feeling lonely at the time. Perhaps you moved away from home to pursue your studies, but even though you are alone in the area, you feel a sense of independence and fulfilment.

Practical examples of being lonely

  • Feeling incomplete and longing to just talk to someone
  • Desperately longing for a hug because of this inner emptiness lurking somewhere inside you
  • Being at a super cool party, but feeling somewhat disconnected to the peeps around you

Practical examples of being alone

  • Studying by yourself for that hectic exam and feeling fulfilled
  • Silently delving into that book you’ve always wanted to read and feeling good about it
  • Chilling at the park on your own and smiling in admiration of nature, art and the environment

How to take ownership of your space

Unfortunately, young peeps are often conflicted when it comes to spending time without being surrounded by people. Experts however state that you need to be comfortable with yourself before you can use solitary time to increase self-awareness. Meditation can also be used as a way to embrace nothingness.

Rather than shying away from solitary time, you can use it to tap into deeper creativeness, awareness and mindfulness. This can be the moment when you shut yourself within yourself to re-member and figure a way out. It is the setting to think of a solution and play it out in your head.

There is a big difference between feeling lonely and being alone. If ever you feel that you are no longer in control of your emotions and/or are simply not coping anymore (for whatever reason); please reach out. Help is at hand. You owe it to yourself to give yourself a fighting chance. Your life and happiness are of utmost importance. There’s no other way of saying it…  You are valuable.

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