Everybody has a chapter that they don’t read out loud but today I am deciding to share that chapter with you. To be very honest I have been trying to avoid writing this one and because I have been very busy lately, it has been and excuse to just keep it to myself for a little longer.
What I do want to say before I share is that I do not want pity or anything like that. I am writing this so that you can realize that you are not alone. In fact that is the heart behind my whole blog, I want you to feel inspired and equipped to being the change in your world and sphere of influence. so with that said today I am going to be talking about my battle with loneliness.
Yip, there I said it. My whole life I have felt a sense of loneliness and it has taken me up until a few months ago to really understand it and be ok with it as well. You see I am a thinker and yes sometimes that is a good thing but I have found when it comes to my loneliness, my thoughts become my worst enemy. When I was younger and I found myself alone I would drown myself in negative thoughts about myself, like ” why doesn’t anyone want to spend time with me ? ” , ” did I do something wrong? ” , ” maybe I am just not meant to fit it? ”
With so many thoughts going through my head they became a way of life for me. Constantly thinking negative thoughts that even when I was in a room full of people I would be thinking those same thoughts. ” why doesn’t she want to talk to me? ” , ” what is it that I need to do to fit in ? ” and if nobody came and spoke to me that night then well I felt like the biggest loser. Nobody knew I was feeling this way because I would cover it up with the ” I don’t care what people think of me ” meanwhile I cared so much that I would go home feeling like the loneliest person on the planet.
A few months ago God revealed something to me that changed my perspective and has helped me live more outwardly and not always in my own head. Here are a few things of what I have learnt about loneliness and the ways in which God helped me realize that it is up to me not to be lonely.
1: Stop being in your own head all the time.
I used to all be stuck in my own thoughts, all that did for me was create stories in my head about people or situations that were simply not true. As soon as I started reading what the bible said about me and an soon as I started thinking about others well being it helped me to focus less on my negative thoughts about myself. Believe it or not but not everything you think is true, even though you might talk yourself into thinking that it is.
2: Break down your walls
Lonely people tend to be pretty closed off. I could just be speaking for my self here but unless you really take the time to know me, you won’t really know me at all. I have a way of protecting myself from getting hurt and that defense mechanism is putting walls up so that people don’t see the real me because there is always that fear that either they won’t like the real me or they will take advantage of the real me.
Realizing this about myself was actually the biggest blessing in discise because I thought to myself if I feel this way surely there are others who do too, so maybe the reason that someone reacts the way they do, or is quiet and shut down is not because they are a horrible person, maybe its because they too have walls that need to come down. When I realized this I had to quickly make a decision that this year is the year that my walls need to come down around my heart.
It has probably been the hardest yet rewarding journey this far. What I can tell you though is that becoming more vulnerable with others and living life a bit more open, allows you to see that others are on the same journey and instead of feeling sorry for your self, you can actually be there for that person in their time of need. Don’t assume that everyone has it all together just because they dress well, have a great job, go to the best school etc……
3: Step out of your shell.
For me it was a case of being intentional with others. I needed to realize that the friends I do have are a gift and that I need to make time for them, yes that required me to write to them first, that required me to go up to them and say hi first, that required me to make the first move. I needed to get out of my comfort zone of insecurity and be a good friend instead of hoping that others would be a good friend to me. sometimes doing the right thing is very un comfortable but the reward is great.
In closing I just want to say that if you are in a season where you feel lonely, just know that you are not alone but that maybe you stepping out and greeting someone, or grabbing a coffee with them or simply not focusing on your lack, you may realize that just like you there are many others who feel the same. Choose to empower instead of feeling sorry for yourself like I did for so many years. Live in Victory not defeat. choose love for others instead of self pity. Focus on God instead of yourself because it could change somebody else’s life for the better.
Images by: Chanelle Photo and Design
Leather Jacket: Edgars