Yes, it is true. Sometimes in the summer there is an unexpected wave of loneliness that can punch us in the face. It makes us feel awkward. And a little bit embarrassed. And maybe a little bit scared. Of what will come next.
One could blame SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder), a type of depression that follows the seasons. It is more common as a "winter depression", but there is also a summer depression (although more rare), and both are related to the changes in the amount of daylight we get.
But opposed to what summer SAD explains (you may feel "down" at the end of the spring and/or at the beginning of the summer), there are a lot of people that feel sad and lonely in the middle of the summer, at its peak.
Possible triggers/ reasons
-We are not that busy anymore, and there's too much time available for ourselves
-Our friends have gone on holidays but we have to stay back and work
-We are moving to a new country/ house, and we don't know anyone in the neighbourhood
-We are changing jobs, and everything is new to us
-We are going through a transformative change in our life, and we need to absorb all this by ourselves
-We are desperately looking for a change, since we feel there's something missing in our life
-We are simply exhausted from the busy winter period and our emotional stamina is low
Why is it so confusing
Whatever the reason, this feeling of loneliness can be quite confusing and demanding. Because we are looking for isolation in order to rest and to put things together and for socializing, both at the same time. Because it pushes us to act, even if we want to stay inactive for a while, or we don't know which way we want to go to.
So, even though the beginning of the summer starts with a nice feeling (since we have the chance to take it down a notch and to recharge our batteries), somewhere at the middle of the holiday period, a feeling of loneliness secretly crawls up us and terrifies us with negative thoughts. We miss our colleagues and our work routine (surprisingly enough!), we see photos of our friends with their other friends and wish we were them, we even see ourselves as friend-less, we feel our energy level falling more and more every day , and the feeling of isolation and loneliness becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy that brings even more isolation, loneliness, shame and pain.
What can we do
"But how can all of the above mentioned make me feel less lonely?", you may ask.
Loneliness is first and foremost due to losing the connection with ourselves.
It's a sign that we are in desperate need of ourselves.
It's us that we have stopped being our own best friend.
We are lonely with ourselves, and that makes us feel lonely among the others.
Therefore, being kind to yourself and spending time with yourself, enjoying time with yourself and only yourself, will help you to gradually erase this fundamental feeling of isolation that you feel within.
And when you need nobody else's company other than your own in order to feel good, the whole world will become your friend.
CALL FOR ACTION
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I would be happy to help.
Counselor/Psychologist - Founder of "The Anti-Loneliness Project"
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