When thinking about happiness and what are the obstacles to obtaining it, I couldn’t help but wonder – does loneliness have anything to do with it?
By: Mary Wright
The more read and learn about happiness, the more I start to think that loneliness is the main obstacle that comes in our way of obtaining true happiness.
As human beings, we need to feel connected to others. We need emotional bonds. We need someone to talk to, to confide… We need to feel like we belong somewhere, with someone.
Of course, being lonely and being alone are two different things. Loneliness is an upsetting, draining, and distracting feeling, and a major block of our happiness.
According to Psychology Today, there are 7 essential types of loneliness that everyone gets to experience at a certain point in their life.
You are in a familiar place, but somehow you feel like you don’t belong there. Perhaps other people love doing outside activities and you prefer the comfort of your home or vice versa. Or perhaps you have different interests than them. Either way, you feel different from everyone around you, and that brings feelings of loneliness and isolation in you.
Sometimes you’ll feel like your friends don’t have time for you. They are busy with their lives, and that’s okay. But, on the inside, you may feel lonely and abandoned by them. On the flip side, there is a loneliness which happens whenever you are surrounded by a bunch of people and you feel lonely among them. This is a kind of loneliness which happens when you are craving your alone time.
Regardless of you having a lot of friends and family, sometimes you feel lonely because you miss having a romantic partner. You miss being intimate with someone, you miss having a deep connection with a partner.
There are times when you feel lonely because you miss being quiet with someone. You miss hanging out with someone and not doing anything in particular. You miss having someone by your side while you are reading a book or watching TV.
Oftentimes, you will find yourself in a situation where you start doubting the intentions of the people who are close to you. Maybe they lied to you, or maybe, there is something about them that you can’t figure it out, but your intuition is telling you that they are not to be trusted. Trust is an important factor in any friendship, and if there is a lack of it – you may feel lonely.
This type of loneliness happens whenever you are introduced to a new situation or scenario – a new city, a new workplace, a new school… you name it. When you find yourself in a place where you don’t know anyone, you can’t help yourself but feel lonely.
There are people who have a deep need to be close to animals and connect with them. They form bonds with them that may be stronger than any human connection they have. And no one can replace it.
Which of these types of loneliness have you experienced?