From The Positive Perspective.......
As I write this column in my office I am alone (except for my 65 pound dog who usually sits on the base of my chair waiting for me to trip over him as I get up to answer the door). I usually value my time alone and see it as a time for reflection or uninterrupted concentration. I welcome the time to look inward and take stock of what I have done today and how tomorrow can be an even better day.
But what if being alone wasn't a choice but a fact of life? There are those among us who feel alone because they do not live near family or have lost connection to their family and community. There are those who feel lonely in spite of being surrounded by people all the time. There are those who are alone because they do not feel as though they "fit in" anywhere and remove themselves from public situations indefinitely.
Does choice fit in to the equation? If you feel you have a choice in the matter and are alone because that is what makes you happy, then by all means enjoy your time alone. But what if it is not your choice but a scenario that you feel is forced upon you?
One key element to happiness, whether you are alone or not, is being accepting of who you are and what you see when you look in the mirror. Think about your strengths and incorporate them into your everyday life to help you see accomplishment in your efforts. Maybe you have the gift of poetry. Maybe you have the gift of writing music. Working on who you are and what you want to become can help build confidence in an individual. Develop skills that are important to you, for you, in celebration of you. Changing core beliefs and behaviors to please someone else will only help you turn into what others need but not what you want. Being who you want to be and letting others see the real you should attract people who admire or appreciate those qualities, thus creating a possible connection with someone.
There are support groups in many communities that can help an individual develop skills to be confident despite certain challenges they may face. If you are not ready for a support group yet but prefer more individualized attention, there are counselors and religious personnel who can help you to learn how to become a vital and contributing part of society, no matter who you are.
Another great source of support can be our elderly population who have lost a spouse of many years and somehow still manage to get up every day with a sense of vigor and determination to make each day count. Many have learned over time to value each day not for what it can give them but for what they can contribute to those around them each day. Do you know anyone like that? Reach out to them for support. If only more of our younger population could have that wisdom just a little bit earlier in life.
Being and feeling lonely can be changed with hard work and determination. Again, this has to do with how you feel on the inside, not how many people are around you. Learning how to be a best friend to yourself can work wonders on reversing that feeling. Think of someone you admire or look up to. What would you do to make that person feel special? What would you do to make that person feel safe and confident? Now do those very same things for yourself. Keep a journal of what you do each day to support yourself. After a week or so, look back. Do you feel any less lonely? Continue to find ways to encourage yourself to be your best. Once that confidence improves, you may feel more willing and able to share yourself with others, knowing that you are a good person. Be an advocate for yourself. No one knows you like you. Love and appreciate all that is special about you. I'll bet there are others out there that would benefit from your knowledge and your talent. Just give them a chance.
It helps to look at this situation From The Positive Perspective.......