More Americans are Getting Lonelier
With the strict implementation of protocols regarding social distancing, lockdowns and quarantine at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, staying away from the people has been the norm. For many, it is essential to avoid close physical contact and crowds for fear of contracting the deadly virus. Being on your own equates to being healthy and breathing.
However, not many handled the situation well. Studies have shown that the negative implications of loneliness on mental health have been highlighted. Staying at home and not seeing family and friends for years led them to feel lonelier and disconnected. This seems like an exaggerated claim on the effects of the pandemic but according to the American Psychological Association, the pandemic has increased the feeling of loneliness among Americans.
Common Reasons why People are Getting Lonelier
In the latest Loneliness Statistics, 52% of Americans reported feeling lonely. BBC Loneliness Experiment revealed that “self-reported loneliness is highest among young people, men and those in “individualistic” societies”.
Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, loneliness was already rising. Loneliness is more than just feeling sad about being alone. It can trigger the deep hurt of being isolated and disconnected. Here are some known reasons why people are getting lonelier than before.
1. Social media makes you feel inadequate.
The advances in technology can be overwhelming which causes people to hesitate in participating in progress. They feel that technology invades their personal spaces and exposes all about them. But it is a change that everyone should learn to adopt.
For example, social media eases the way people connect and communicate but it is also a breeding ground for bullying, shaming and violence. Social media makes you feel that you are not enough. Whatever you post, people will always have something bad to say. Being on social media resonates with the fact that you are not always liked and accepted.
2. Loneliness is contagious.
A 2009 study found that 52% are more likely to be lonely if they are directly connected to someone lonely like a family member, close friend or colleague. Not many people know that loneliness can infect others. The negative energy and emotions it generates can be passed down to someone who constantly listens to their problems.
It is not wrong to be there for your family and friends whenever they are sad and lonely but you also have to keep your mental state in check. Make sure that you are not easily affected by unpleasant experiences.
3. People hate being with lonely people.
The sad fact is, that no one wants to be around lonely people. Lonely people tend to be a recluse and refuse to socialize with others. Even if they are with their friends, they do not seem to be enjoying or interacting.
With this kind of vibe, many would choose to stay away from them because they may spoil the fun. This is why lonely people feel that no one understands them. They are shunned by their own family and friends because they constantly feel gloomy and tired in social settings.
4. Many choose to live far.
As you get older, you face so many choices in life like which job pays more or which city is more affordable? Some have to relocate and live far from their close friends and family because they get offers that are hard to pass up. Other families prefer to choose a state or a city that is safer and more conducive for children.
Living far from the place where you grow up and away from your family and longtime friends can be an enormous change. This means that you have to start from scratch in terms of socializing and making friends.
5. People have fewer friends now.
Only 59% of Americans declared that they have at least one best friend and 12% said that they felt they have no friends at all based on the data by Loneliness Statistics. Not having friends to talk to or confide in contributes to feeling isolated. You need social and emotional support from friends to help you overcome challenges in your family or at work. Having meaningful and deep friendships makes you happier and more satisfied with your life.
“Loneliness arises when people experience a mismatch between their desired and actual social relationships. Between the ages of 18 and 29, establishing secure identities, forming intimate relationships and friendships are important goals. Thus, young adults may experience loneliness if their desired relationship goals do not match their reality”.
We all experience loneliness at some point in our lives. But the moment we allow it to reside in our minds, we are at risk of experiencing its negative consequences to our physical and mental health. It is never healthy to experience loneliness. Prolonged social isolation leads to heart diseases and depression.
If you continue to feel extremely sad and lonely, even when you are with your family and close friends, it is advisable to seek therapy or counseling. Nothing is more important than your health and wellness. It is not something that you easily dismissed. These days, many can distract you from feeling happy. This is why you need to be mentally strong.
Mindshift Psychological Services provides excellent therapy and counseling sessions for those who are struggling with mental health issues like isolation, depression and anxiety. Our team of medical experts is highly trained to handle various conditions that greatly affect day-to-day lives.
Visit our website to know more about us. You may also contact us at (714)584-9700.