Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Alone vs. Lonely

Lately since I've moved I have had a lot of time for self reflection (I will get to that).

One idea I have been reflecting upon and really breaking down a lot is the concept of loneliness. Living alone for the first time can spark a lot of emotions that I perceived to be loneliness based upon my reaction to them and how it was affecting me.

Sunday evening I read a blog post from Elite Daily titled "Why You Should Move to a New City Where You Don't Know a Single Soul" Great blog. Really expressed a lot of things I have been feeling and also clarified some things (except for the part about dying your hair a crazy color or wearing a hoop nose ring...did that sophomore year of college). Within the blog, the author Eimear states

Alone” does not necessarily mean “lonely” and with your own company, you can do exactly what you want, on your own timeline and budget. A solo move can be an important period of introspection that may allow you to reconnect with your individual thoughts, dreams and desires."

This is interesting. This made me think. And I started to re-examine what the Backstreet Boys attempted to describe previously in my personal favorite album "Millennium" with the hit "Show Me the Meaning of Being Lonely" what it means to be lonely and what it means to be alone.



When I first googled the definition of loneliness, the first thing that came to me was:

"Sadness because one has no friends or company."

.....

Let's not go with that one. When I went to the more reliable source of Merriam-Webster the definition states: "causing sad feelings from being apart from other people". That makes more sense.

Now when we look at the definition of alone, that states: "without anyone or anything else: not involving or including anyone or anything else: separate from other people or things"

Alright, this was getting me somewhere.

While it is true loneliness, is a result of being alone, it does not always come with the sad feelings. The emotions just look different.

For example, struggling to zipper up the back of my dress in the morning with no help is a side effect of being alone. Getting really upset at night because you hear noises coming from the city and having no one to run to now that is loneliness.

Another example, being able to walk around your apartment in just a towel is a great side effect of being alone. But having no one to share a big bowl of popcorn with when you watch a movie can be loneliness (and I say that because it's sad the amount of calories I can consume when I don't share).

With that all being said, this move has allowed me to really examine the two different emotions. This alone time has given me a lot of time to recharge and reflect like a true introvert and really see what needs to be done in my life and where I should put more time and energy.

I have also accepted that it's okay to experience loneliness. As humans we long for connection and interaction with one another. We're charged and built to do so! It's just finding what makes us happy in those moments, whether it is FaceTiming a friend or having a text conversation till late in the night.

I really like this topic. And I really like this conversation...I want to keep it going and I'd love to hear your thoughts!

xox,
gfr

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