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Love Alone Is Enough To Transform Loneliness Into Solitude! - Blog

Love Alone Is Enough To Transform Loneliness Into Solitude!

We watched her break down in silence. She was sitting on a stool with her soft napkin in her hand. She was trying to conceal her emotional turmoil by going about her household chores brusquely -but was failing miserably at it. That dignified lady is our Ma. My sister and I could feel the tears coursing down our faces too.

We belonged to a joint family. Four generations and over twenty members live together. Yet, with so many people around her, my Ma was overwhelmed briefly by a bout of loneliness. She felt no one really understood her – her thoughts, her feelings, her expectations or the constant quiet contribution that she was making for the entire family. She felt she was being taken for granted.

Yes, sadly enough, it is possible to feel lonely even when we live amidst so many people. Why do we feel lonely? Can we avoid it? Well, I’d like to discuss ‘solitude’ first. Because then ‘loneliness’ becomes easier to understand.

Solitude is about being at peace with our own selves. We can spend time on our own happily. We don’t mind the fact that there is no one to share that wonderful sunset with us. We can go for long solo walks. We can live on our own. We will rustle up a dish that we love and enjoy eating it on our own. No, solitude doesn’t make us selfish. Solitude means being happy in our own skin.

And this can happen only when we share a great relationship with ourselves. We can love ourselves only when we do the things that we love and love doing the things that we have to do in order to nurture a relationship. When there is an abundance of love in our hearts, we enjoy doing even the most mundane of tasks. We happily smile at a total stranger. We create time and space for the things that we love doing and infuse them with our passion and love.

And this love will help us forge strong bonds of love with at least a handful of people. The equation that we share with each person will differ. But there is some kind of balance in each relationship. That is enough for us because we are accepted the way we are and loved despite our flaws.

Loneliness on the other hand happens when we feel we are not valued and/or loved and/or accepted and/or respected in our relationships. In simple terms, it means we are rejected or taken for granted. Our voice is stifled. We cease to matter to the people around us.

Depending on the dynamics of our ever changing relationships we all will experience frequent bouts of loneliness and solitude. The trick lies in making that transition from loneliness to solitude and creating our own happy space in our lives. Here are some simple ways to avoid loneliness:

Let’s keep love at the centre of our relationships – always:

Let’s infuse each little deed that we do for our loved ones with love-filled vibrations. Love has a beautiful voice of its own. Yes, we do often feel that we are taken for granted. But that is never actually the case.

Our loved ones just express their love for us in a different way. They do love us. It is just that we are not able to perceive their expressions of love.

We may feel lonely at times. We may feel that nobody understands us. But that is just an emotional error that we all often tend to make. Love may flow out of our lives briefly but it will flow right back into our lives – when we need it the most. Always.

Let’s keep our expectations in check:

When we love someone, we, by default, start expecting things from them. We expect them to do all that we want – now – this very instant. Our loved ones don’t actually have a problem with fulfilling our expectations. But we need to stop breathing down their necks like that. Different people do things at different paces.

We have no right to burden them with our fair/unfair demands all the time. We can’t keep taking away from a relationship like that. Because one fine day, we will be put in our place firmly – and we will be forced to hear a big resounding “NO”!

Isn’t it better to not expect so much? Is it really so difficult to do all the things that we can – on our own – for as long as we are able to?

Let’s empathize:

We have this ridiculous tendency of shutting people out of our lives the minute there is a conflict in our relationship. Instead of trying to empathize, we prefer to reside in the fragile bubble created by our egos. We don’t want to engage in discussions at all. Often, we know that the other person is not even going to make an attempt to understand our point of view. So, we start drifting apart in the relationship.

Is it so difficult for us to understand that our loved ones need to live their lives their way? Can they not have their own priorities in life? Why do we choose to ignore their challenges? It’s fine if we are unable to empathize with them. At least let’s not shackle them with our expectations.

Love is inclusive:

Love means saying, “This has always worked for me. I may not fully understand your perceptions and beliefs but I respect you and love you and know your perceptions and beliefs will work for you.” When we include another person’s perceptions/beliefs/values in our relationship – we become more flexible and open in our relationships. There is mutual respect. So the bond of love becomes deeper.

Let’s not try to change our loved ones:

Why do we constantly try to change others so that they fit into our mould of thinking and feeling? Instead let’s master the art of being flexible till our dying day. No two human beings can ever think or feel the same way. But there is more than enough space for all of us in this big beautiful world. It’s only when we learn to accept our loved ones the way we are – will we share a great relationship with them.

When we share a great relationship with others – we know we are loved. We feel happy and secure in the concept called love. We feel happy with ourselves. We feel happy when we are with our loved ones. We feel secure in love even when they are not around us. That’s solitude.

But if there are constant notes of discord in our relationships – it just proves that no one or someone is unwilling to adapt to the ever changing scenario of life. That is when we feel unhappy with ourselves. We struggle with our relationships. And end up feeling unhappy when we are on our own. That’s when loneliness seeps in.

Yet, there is hope. We can all make that transition from loneliness to solitude. Let’s just allow love to flow out of our lives seamlessly. Then all we have to do is to wait with a whole lot of patience in our heart – for it to flow right back into our lives.

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