What to Do When You Feel Alone and Unloved
Do you sometimes feel alone and unloved? Is this a chronic state? Perhaps you wonder why you never get invited anywhere. Perhaps you’ve reached out to a friend when you’re having a crisis only to be ignored, Perhaps your romantic relationship has ended and you feel broken and crushed.
It’s normal to feel this way occasionally, but if these thoughts and feelings persist, the feeling of being unloved and unwanted will wreak havoc on your chakras, especially the heart chakra.
If you’re in a relationship and feel lonely, it might help to know that if love isn’t coming from the source you want it to come from, it may be because the person you love cannot express love to you in a way that you want or understand. For example, not everyone is touchy and expresses love with physical affection. But if that’s how you perceive that love should be expressed, you’re bound to feel disappointed (especially if you never communicate this need!).
Love can mean different things to each of you. It’s important to discuss how you need love to be expressed to you, and how you like to express love. How you express it, may not be what the other person is expecting or wanting!
Here are just a few ways that love is expressed. You’ll know immediately which ones are meaningful to you and which feel like “Really? This is love?”
- Physical affection: hugging, holding hands, kissing, stroking
- Talking/listening about dreams, passions, goals
- Love notes
- Sharing time together in mutual interests/activities
- Verbal expressions of love and appreciation
- Gifts: anything from a little artisan chocolate to a cruise around the world
- Keeping memories (photo albums, etc.)
- Financial support
- Helping without being asked, or without argument if asked
- Taking care of yourself physically
- Cooking, cleaning and other forms of caregiving
- Refraining from clingy, jealous words or behaviors
- Demonstrating respect
You may be surprised – or not – that many people actually feel lonely and unloved within a relationship. Your partner may be too wrapped up in career, or kids, to devote much attention to you. Or, you may have neglected to communicate how you need love to be expressed to you and so your partner is showing you love in his or her way, which may not be what you want.
If you’re feeling alone or unloved, it’s easy to play the blame game or worse, to wallow in self-pity. Loneliness is a breeding ground for negative, dis-empowering and self-critical thoughts. “Why doesn’t anybody love me? What’s wrong with me?” and other self-destructive thoughts can spiral down into depression very quickly. Ironically, when you feel like this, it’s easier to withdraw even more. Instead of using loneliness to encourage seeking social activities, we curl up in the fetal position, “me vs. the world.”
It’s a very hostile way to see yourself – that you’re unlovable. You may unconsciously act out the “truth” that your self-critical self-talk proclaims. For example, if you tell yourself that you “are no good at talking to strangers” – is it any wonder that you stand alone by the punch bowl and make yourself stand out? Or, if you tell yourself that “I don’t have any friends” and then never pick up the phone to invite someone for coffee… is it any wonder you never get calls? People like reciprocity. If they’re always the ones doing the inviting, and you never make the effort, it makes them feel sad and lonely too but admittedly it’s really hard to think this way when you’re in the depths of self-pity!
The reason you have an inner critic is to protect you from uncomfortable and potentially painful situations. Instead of taking a deep breath and approaching a stranger (and possibly being rejected) you hang out at the punch bowl and receive a chemical reward instead.
But sometimes it’s a “nice” voice and other times, quite awful. You might hear, “It’s okay, you don’t have to stay at the party! It’s boring anyway and you love hanging out at home alone reading your favorite books!” or… “See, I told you not to go. Nobody’s talking to you because you don’t fit in!”
Ouch, right? You’re not alone in this, so how come some people find it easier to talk to strangers and actually take the action necessary to have a wide and active social circle?
You may feel good temporarily if you listen to the inner critic, but overall you feel terrible because you don’t make friends easily. So instead of listening to those verbal self-attacks, challenge them through self-talk and courageous action. It takes effort and you can do it in small steps (no pressure to become the life of the party!) but believe me, it’s worthwhile.
Some helpful tips:
Read up on or conversation starters so you always have something friendly and engaging to say in social gatherings.
Put a SMILE on your face. I can’t stress this enough! Even if you’re petrified, smile. If someone catches your eye as you scan the room looking for a familiar or friendly face, smile.
Be a friend. If you’re going to attract friends, you have to be a friend. Start with the friends you have now. Call your friends and invite them to do things. They might just bring other people with them, and your circle can expand.
Every day, affirm, “I love myself.” You can’t ever say this enough, so do it often. This affirmation will create positive neural pathways in the brain that focus on self-love – which will radiate outward as confidence, high self-esteem, friendliness, approachability and it will change your life!
Forgive yourself! We find it easier to forgive others than ourselves. Keep in mind, all negative (hurtful) behaviors come from a person’s inner pain. They don’t come from a happy, loving place. Be compassionate to the pain, and use the above affirmation to increase your self-love.
Finally, think outside yourself. When you’re thinking “I am lonely, nobody loves me,” etc. it’s all “me, me, me” and your ego gets all riled up because of this. So think about others. How about volunteering one day a month? That won’t put a dent in your schedule, and it will put the focus on helping others, which automatically makes you feel better about yourself. And it’s a great topic of conversation.
It will take time to reprogram yourself to love yourself to the point that that love radiates from you – and effortlessly attracts the right people. So don’t give up on yourself; and meantime, immerse yourself in your passions!