Understanding and Overcoming Social Isolation
Feeling alone despite being surrounded by people is a common experience. There are a variety of reasons that people experience difficulty establishing and maintaining relationships, and find themselves lacking the support and intimacy that they desire. Sometimes it is a lack of confidence, shyness, or a feeling of being different from others that holds people back. Sometimes there are more practical issues at play. For instance reaching an age where your friends mingle less, stay home more, or take different paths than you. It is also common to experience difficulty establishing a social network after moving to a city from out of town, another country, or interstate. In other instances a person’s job may not provide opportunities to meet like-minded people, and may leave little time for alternate avenues of social interaction.
Another common issue is difficulty maintining relationships over the longer term. Whether in platonic or intimate spheres, many people find that their friendships or relationships repeatedly falter or fade away, leading to a sense that “nothing ever works out”. The reasons for this can be complex, with subtle cycles potentially playing themselves out over time.
Every person is different, and each has their own combination of internal and external factors driving their difficulties establishing and maintining social connections. The first step is understanding what combination of influences is at work for you. Then you can begin to take control and learn how to set new patterns in train.
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