Is it because you fear being alone?
Loneliness or being alone: Isn’t it weird that more people feel isolated and alone these days. Yet, there are 8 billion people on the planet with the internet and social media that keep all of us connected? Some people are afraid of being alone. They believe they need people around them to feel happy and content. Why is it difficult for someone to be alone? Is there something wrong with you if you always feel alone?
Loneliness is not quantified by the amount of time we spend alone, but rather by how we feel about the time we spend alone. What does this mean?
In his book – Lost Connections, Johann Hari explains that ”to end loneliness, you need other people plus something else. You also need to feel you are sharing something with the other person or group that is meaningful to both of you.”
Loneliness isn’t the physical absence of other people, it is the sense that you’re not sharing anything that matters with anyone else. Johann Hari
Is there a difference between being alone and being single? Many people also confuse ”singleness” with being alone.
It is easy to believe
- that when we feel lonely, all we need is someone else to make the hurt/loneliness go away;
- that we aren’t enough to make ourselves complete. We think we will be happy once we are in a relationship with someone. It is as if we wait for someone else to come and make us complete.
Dr Myles Munroe stated ”There is a profound difference between being single and being alone. In Genesis 2:18, God said, It is not good that man should be alone. He did not say that it wasn’t good for him to be single.” According to Dr Munroe, not to be alone requires only to have other humans as close friends and companions. He also says marriage was NOT instituted to save humans from loneliness – human beings were created for that.
This revelation from Dr Myles is a significant one for us to grasp. If you do, it means you won’t dislike being ”single or unmarried”, and you won’t get into a relationship for the wrong reasons.
What are the wrong reasons?
- If you don’t like being alone
- if you need only physical gratification,
- if you feel empty without someone at your side are some wrong reasons.
What are you bringing to the table in a relationship?
Some people will say ” I cannot live without you” or ”If you leave my world will fall to pieces”. Statements like that are not romantic; they are rather scary because they show weakness or a dependency much like an addiction. You can become addicted to a person, much like an addiction to a substance or behaviour.
Most of the time a person will spend all of their time focusing on what he/she can do to be more desirable, to make the potential partner like you more, make him/her choose you. If you are doing this – you are missing something big – YOU.
The most important thing is to know who you are and knowing your worth.
So the one thing you absolutely must bring to the table in a new relationship is knowing what you bring to the table.
So it isn’t about the other person. You’re not supposed to convince him/her how wonderful you are. If you know who you are and what your worth is, it makes you a confident person.
- A confident person does not just accept anyone into their lives.
- They are not dependent on the opinions of others to sustain their self-worth.
- They don’t compromise their values.
- They don’ try to change themselves to be more likeable.
- They don’t bend and twist to keep a partner happy.
- They know they are a great catch.
So many of us don’t even understand our own true value, our own true worth. We don’t realize all of the wonderful things about ourselves, and we sell ourselves short. This is why it’s so important to really look at yourself, and know your worth.
What can I do to discover my self-worth?
Make a list of everything you know about yourself that you have to offer a partner –
- What characteristics do you have?
- What skills do you have?
- What traits (habits) do you have?
- will help to remind you what a great catch you really are.
- Help you know if you will actually be compatible with him and remind you of your values to know if he shares these same ones.
- It will help make sure that he brings a lot to the table – at least more than good looks and a charming personality.
- It will help ground you, in reality, to evaluate him as well – for example, if you are a kind person, is the one too? If you are a giving, loving person, is the one too?
What is the meaning of this for us?
Dr Munroe explains it means when you are still single, you have to become a unique, content individual, who knows you don’t need anyone to complete you. If you can do that, you can be successful in any relationship, because you bring into that relationship what you are as a person. In contrast to that – a person who is not happy and content as a single person, who does not know who he/she is in Christ, or who do not have a firm identity of their own, will always reach for someone else to hold them up.
If you expect others to make you happy, you will always be disappointed. The truth is that no one can make you happy, nor can you make anyone else happy. ”Happiness is being responsible for your own experience,” says Thomas Oppong. Happiness is an inside job. Don’t assign anyone else that much power over your life.
“Everyone has a place in the world, and yours shouldn’t be inside someone else.”
— Adrea Cope
Complete vs incomplete person:
Dr Munroe explains that if you are not a content ”whole” person, you might reach out to others to complete you for the wrong reasons, and you might be exploited sexually, financially or emotionally by another person. In a situation like this, you are frantically just trying to fulfil your own needs, and might not ever care about others’ needs. The truth is that no one in a relationship or marriage has the time to fill up the emptiness a partner feels. We see this often when a person complains about a partner who is too busy to fulfil their needs or give enough attention to them.
It is important to know that.
- No one is going to come and complete you – everyone out there is busy completing themselves.
- They don’t have time to fill up all your empty spaces. If you believe this, you are putting your happiness in the hands of someone else. So – if you feel lonely, you have to remedy it by yourself.
- It is a heavy burden to place on a partner to expect him/her to make you happy or fill up what you lack in yourself. A human being will never be the answer to our problems when our problems lie so deeply in our fear of being by ourselves.
Start taking responsibility for yourself. Since you cannot sit and wait for someone else to rescue you from loneliness – you have to go out there and start living. Plan your day. Fill the empty parts in your life with things that speak to your soul.
Practice developing a collective vision of life. People who shut themselves away in their homes and have an individualistic vision towards life tend to be more lonely and depressed than people who have a collective vision towards life, who share their lives with the community and people around them.
Do things that make you happy. Happiness can be in things you enjoy doing on your own. Taking care of yourself shows you are okay with who you are. Focus more on making things better for people around you or your community – it brings more happiness than focusing on yourself.
Have your own goals. Yes – you need to chase your own dreams and set your own goals. There is a reason you are here. Find the reason and live the life that God planned for you.
If you don’t know who you are, why do you think you will find yourself in someone else? Dr Myles Munroe
The bottom line here is you have to love yourself first. If you don’t, you will expect your partner to make up for the absence of self-love. In truth, no one has the time to be dealing with a person who does not love themselves, who are needy, demanding, and empty. No one can compensate for what you lack in yourself.
When a relationship fails, it is a good idea to give yourself time to reflect on what happened, instead of moving quickly into the next one. Ask yourself what your contribution that the relationship failed was? If you don’t, your next relationship might follow the same path.
When are you ready for a partner? The day you realize you are happy and content on your own. A partner is not supposed to complete you, but to compliment you.
How do I become a whole person?
A message from God: What is God asking you do to? What is the thing God created you to be?
“Sometimes, God will back you into a corner and take away all your other alternatives because He wants to show you His miracle-working power. Perhaps you are facing a difficult situation and have come to the place where you can say, “I’ve tried everything else. All I have now is what God has said to me.” Whenever God reduces you to His Word, if that’s all you have to go on, you’re about to receive a miracle! As long as you have a scheme to fall back on, you aren’t going to see the miracle. However, when you say, “I can’t do anything else; I don’t know what to do. If God doesn’t come through, I’m going under,” then God says, “I like this situation. I’m going to get involved in this because I love to do the impossible!” If you have faith in God’s Word, God will take what is “impossible” and make it seem like an everyday thing.” Myles Munroe, Understanding The Purpose And Power Of Prayer
“Faith gives us hope, so if faith is lost, hope flees away like mist in the wind. Loss of faith leads to loss of hope, which leads to despair. Life becomes pointless and without value.” Dr Myles Munroe
If you need to talk about this, you are welcome to chat to one of our online counsellors. The service is free, and you may remain anonymous. Click on: LIVE CHAT