Loneliness is a very loosely used term.
If you say you are lonely, the advise you receive is
- Mingle more
- Be social
- Become attractive
- Keep yourself occupied
- Change places
- Go on a vacation
- Try a new hobby
The above list will help those who are temporarily lonely. But if you have been experiencing chronic loneliness, you will desperately try all of them only to feel more lonely and feel more distressed that you are hopeless. By escaping from reality you are only building a temporary respite. The root cause is not solved and it keeps haunting you over and again.
Root Cause of Loneliness
One of the root causes of loneliness is insecure attachment. According to research, 40% of the adults are insecurely attached. Insecure attachment happens mostly in infancy when your parents did not reciprocate to your emotions and attention bids.
Insecure attachment is of two types: Attachment anxiety and Attachment avoidance.
Symptoms of Attachment anxiety:
- You overly apologize
- You need constant confirmation that you are loved
- You are always in need of emotional support and can’t get enough of it
- You often feel painful emotions
- You constantly imagine rejection
- You are too sensitive to handle
- You open up too deep and fast in a relationship
- You are stuck in a miserable relation because you prefer it to being alone
- You are always on the lookout for the right person to connect to and expect him to be the solution for all your problems
Symptoms of Attachment avoidance:
- You can relate only when there is a purpose and terrible at small talk
- You never ask for emotional help
- You derive your worth from competence. If you are able to achieve, you feel pride and if you don’t you feel shame.
- You are often in need of a company but don’t know what and how
- You try to prove yourself in the conflict rather than solving the problem
You may have both attachment anxiety and attachment avoidance too. Don’t blame your parents now because they did their best in raising you. They might be also insecurely attached and would not have known how to provide the right care.
What can you do to stop feeling lonely?
Research found mindfulness can create same impact on brain which secure attachment in childhood does. Mindfulness basically helps you deal with the painful emotions which you encounter in insecure attachment. Once you feel aware of your emotions and pay attention to it, you will become the parent who gives secure attachment to the child.
Self-compassion is about giving yourself permission to make mistakes. When you make a mistake you should not beat yourself up but talk to yourself in a soft and gentle manner on the path to avert the recurrence of mistake.
What type of attachment do you have? When are you starting mindfulness practice?
Share it with us in comments section.
Happy fighting loneliness!