Kaleidoscope of Loneliness

 

Now more then ever we’re connected. Through technology. And yet there is a huge surge of research to show we’re feeling more lonely. That in fact, we’re facing a loneliness epidemic!


The UK has launched a significant campaign to end loneliness. They have even appointed a Minister of Loneliness.


Beyond the debate over the causes, there is agreement on it’s health impact. In this article we’re offered a view that loneliness is a great significator of stress, impacting our heart health and immune system.


When separated from others, humans find themselves in a psychological stress state some might refer to as “fight or flight.” Being around other people provides safety and security that stifles this stress state and decreases the perception of loneliness. When alone, or feeling alone, humans subconsciously sense that they must be more aware of threats in the environment, so the body prepares to deal with them via a stress response.
— Hannah Schulze

Loneliness is in the eye of the beholder. Like all experiences, we need to dive in a little deeper to explore definitions, meaning and context.

Gretchen Rubin, The Happiness Project offers us one way to pull apart what many are now calling an epidemic. (ps. just that word activates a little stress, ehh?). She writes here about seven different types of loneliness.

It’s important to realize why we feel lonely, because only then can we see how we might address it.
— Gretchen Rubin

There is a great new book out by Teal Swan called…The Anatomy of Loneliness.

I am looking forward to reading this book. I find Teal’s work in the world refreshing, challenging and most importantly a formidable trifecta for transformation: truth, spirituality and living practically.

Interested in her perspective, check out this lecture below. It will have you re-thinking not only loneliness but also how you are stepping into creating genuine community. Teal is raw, authentic and inspiring. She positions loneliness as a true call for committing to LIFE. What I most appreciate about her work is her willingness to not sugar coat the subject matter, she digs deep into the roots of what might actually be occurring at the level of cause.


Why dig into this conversation?

For me, it matters. The heart of my work in my life, leadership & service is the pursuit of guiding genuine community.

Supporting women leaders to LOVE leading in community. Community for me ignites when two or more gather.

So much of our personal & professional development comes down to how we relate to ourself and each other. Life itself is a relationship, to everything. It would be wise to pause and consider how loneliness is influencing us, our families, communities & workplaces.

If the research is close to hitting the mark, we can each greatly start right here, right now to influence a shift. Inherent in all of our WHY’s and Purpose is the call to return home to ourselves and each other in connection.

Invitation

Consider,

  • how is loneliness showing up for you in your life, leadership & service?

  • how does the presence or absence of loneliness influence your WHY of leadership?

  • what influence your current world view is having on your experience of connection, separation?


Wholeness can’t truly take flight if we’re unaware of how our choices are perpetuating the myth and illusionary glory of separation.


Ready to shape a new story for your leadership, in community?