What is Loneliness?
Loneliness is a feeling of being alone or isolated.
Just as a picture can paint a thousand words, a story can shine a light on an issue. So will begin with a story about a small boy wanting to make some friends…
I was never really good at making friends. I was always the shy, quiet kid who sat in the back of the classroom. When it came time to play games at recess, I was always left out. So I would just sit on the sidelines and watch as the other kids played. I didn’t mind, though. I was content just watching them.
But one day, I decided that I didn’t want to be a spectator anymore. I wanted to be a part of the action. So I went up to a group of kids who were playing tag and asked if I could join in. At first, they were hesitant, but I begged and pleaded until they finally relented.
It was great. I finally felt like I belonged. I was running and laughing and having so much fun. But then, I turned around and saw that everyone else had stopped playing and was just watching me. It was like they were waiting for me to make a mistake.
I was self-conscious and embarrassed. I wanted to just blend in and be like everyone else, but I couldn’t. I was different. And no matter how hard I tried, I could never change that.
Some of the impacts of loneliness on self-esteem can include feeling isolated, feeling worthless, and feeling like one is not good enough. Additionally, loneliness can lead to depression and anxiety, which can further impact self-esteem.
Overcoming Issues of Loneliness
There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question. Some people may find it helpful to spend time with friends and family, while others may find it helpful to join a club or group. Some people may find it helpful to volunteer, while others may find it helpful to simply spend time alone.
Whatever works best for the individual, there is no shame in seeking help to overcome loneliness.