Alone vs. Lonely

Posted on Posted in Lifestyle, Updates, Writing

“You cannot be lonely if you like the person you’re alone with.”

I’ve always enjoyed time to myself. I love the ability to get caught up in an endless thought process and not be interrupted. I love to be able to be silent without worrying that I am making someone else feel uncomfortable.

Being here in a new city, it’s harder than I thought. Other places I’ve traveled to alone, I’ve met people pretty easily, but it’s not the same here. I’ve heard it before but never experienced for myself that it is indeed more difficult to meet people in a big city. Seems backwards, doesn’t it?

I’ve been here for a little under a month so far. Don’t get me wrong, I have met people. I have been going out of my comfort zone and asking people to hang out and introducing myself to others but still, it’s a slower process than I am used to. At home, I have my friends and then I have friends of my friends, it’s easy to meet others or reach out to people you want to connect with. At school, everyone wants to know everyone and you are surrounded by people who share things in common with you all the time. I know that it’s only myself that is stopping me from striking up a conversation with the random person on the bus, but something about it is significantly harder. You realize, not only do I know nothing about this city but this person has an entire life that I don’t know about. While that is awesome and I can appreciate the hell out of it, it’s also quite intimidating. In my head, the only thing I can think about is that if I keep asking this person to hang out, I look desperate because they are just living their life and here is this girl who is new and just wants human interaction, how lame. So, just don’t ask because then you seem like you’re adjusting and meeting other people and you don’t need to keep hitting that one person up. It’s a viscous and destructive thought process. I know that I want to push beyond this comfort zone I’ve built up for myself but I haven’t quite gotten there yet. I think about it everyday, I just can’t bring myself to be more forward than I ever have in my entire life yet. If you know me personally, you would know that once you get to know me, I am a quite out-going and lively person but I do have introvert tendencies when it comes to getting to know people at first or making the first move (I don’t just mean guys, I mean with people in general).

I knew when I came here that I needed to change that, I have been working on it but for now….

I’m alone.

But…I’m not lonely.

There’s quite a big difference you see. Generally, both these words have quite a negative connotation associated with them.

I am physically by myself quite a bit. Admittedly, a bit more than I would rather but that change comes with time. I’m not feeling sorry for myself because I am trying and I am improving. The thing is, I can actually feel myself growing (mentally, not physically – thank the lord) with every day that I go out of my comfort zone and do something by myself. And thanks to time by myself, I have grown to appreciate time hanging out with people more – listening more, laughing more, inquiring more.

I do not feel lonely. I am in a new city accompanied by endless opportunities.

I could be lonely – easily but I’m not letting myself.

That’s the difference.

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