Alone in a Crowd? Or Lonely?

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Alone in a crowd ... image was intentionally softened and colors muted to all but the alone person.

‘Alone’ and ‘lonely’, two words synonymous in nature but with the power of expressing two different kinds of presence /absence. When we say that a person is alone we basically mean that he/she has no one else with him/ her; that the person concerned has only themselves for the company. But using the word lonely beings a different meaning and feeling to the person’s state of being. A person can feel lonely in a middle of a huge crowd. A person can be lonely every when surrounded by groups of friends, relatives or acquaintances.

The world consists of trillions of people. We have thousands of people that we get to know throughout our lives. But even then, why do we feel lonely sometimes? Why do we feel like we have no one with us even when surrounded by 100s of people?

Being lonely is a state of isolation, it can be an isolation of the mind, heart or the physical being. One can choose to be lonely by themselves and sometimes loneliness is imposed on us by others or our circumstances.

Do you sometimes feel like no one can understand you? They are unable to get what you want to say or express? It is common for almost everyone. At least it happens with me many-a-times. Such situations lead us to feel lonely. When no one is able to understand our words, our feelings, our emotions, we feel detached, we feel that we don’t connect with them. And this leads us to feel lonely. We may have many friends, many people we know, but if no one among them is able to understand us that we feel as if we are alone. We want to reach out to them but we are not able to. We then tend to lean towards loneliness rather than keeping company with whom we are not able to communicate efficiently.

As we gradually distance ourselves from others, our isolated increases and ultimately we become alienated beings. Such conditions may even push us towards depression which is never good for anyone. A depressed person mostly chooses to be alone rather than being with other people.

Isolation can be physical too. Do you ever notice that you and the company you keep don’t match each other? That you are different from the people surrounding you? Such circumstances may lead to a kind of isolation that is self-imposed and sometimes imposed by others if you are the unique one in the group.

You may start distancing yourself because you are different from them. Or they may start pushing you aside because of your differences. You may have numerous people around you but sometimes your physical appearance may be the cause of your isolation and loneliness.

It is also said that our heart plays an important role in the decisions we make in our lives. Even if we are comfortable and well matched in our peer groups, sometimes some instances make us feel alone and lonely. This can also lead to a type of self-imposed alienation or isolation.

There are many people in the world who are very imaginative, who live more in their world of imagination than in the real world. Such people are also often isolated in a crowd. But they seem to enjoy their loneliness. Their loneliness gives them the time and space to think and enhance their creativity and imaginative process.

Being isolated, alienated, lonely or alone, are all state of being. They may either be chosen or imposed, be depending on the situation and circumstances. But usually, no one likes to be isolated or alone for a very long period of time. Whereas being isolated for a certain period of time may be productive, stretching and endless extension of the period of isolation may be depressive. There is a very fine and thin line separating both and we need to be conscious of it before any calamity befalls us.

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