You experience loneliness, not to be confused with depression or aloneness. Being alone is not a bad thing. But when you think being alone means you don’t matter, it turns to loneliness which does cause you to feel sad and down.
Loneliness usually relates to being socially isolated or dissatisfied in the relationships you have. As a result of that feeling, you can isolate even more and continue those negative thoughts.
However, we can choose not to feel lonely by doing something to connect with others, like being around people, taking a class, going to church, etc. We can lift our mood by reading a funny book, watching a movie, or meditating on the goodness of God and praying.
It’s all in what you tell yourself. If you think nobody cares about you, you will feel bad. If you think, hey, I have time to do some things I really love, you feel better.
Like so many things in our lives, the way we think about something matters.
Dr. Cacioppo, director of the Center for Cognition and Social Neuroscience at the University of Chicago, says some people are genetically more prone to loneliness than others. But when it comes to gender, men and women experience loneliness at similar rates. The difference is that woman want more face to face relationships and men like to be connected in a group.
Loneliness is often based on a worry that somehow we don’t matter. This worry can dissipate if we accept the love of God who tells us He will never leave us or forsake us. Our ever present God is a constant companion with whom we can daily communicate. So change that story that no one cares about you. God is Emmanuel, God with you.
And don’t give up on finding people with whom you can connect. Take a risk. Invite someone to coffee, attend a singles meeting at church, look for opportunities to volunteer in your community, get a pet, and join an Internet chat group related to a hobby or interest. Most of all, don’t allow yourself to belief the lie that nobody cares about you!
Your child comes home from school and tells you the teacher treated her unfairly. There was a fight and she was sent to the principal’s office. But it wasn’t her fault and the teacher was picking on her.
a) Side with your child and promise to call the principal and straighten things out.
b) Support the teacher and tell your child that the teacher did what she thought was necessary.
c) Get mad and go to the school to settle it with the teacher.
I hope you answered b. Why? Because that is what the teacher needs to be respected and carry out discipline in the classroom. The other two answers undermine the teacher’s authority and teach your child she doesn’t have to respect the teacher.
Unfortunately, respect is being lost among parents and students. According to a Harris poll that asked adults to compare their memory of “school dynamics” when they were students with today, 46% of parents respect teachers, a drop from 91%.
And only 31%of students respect their teachers, a drop from 79%.
This means that parents often undermine the teacher’s authority and make excuses for their children’s behavior. Teachers are often unfairly blamed, which tears at their respect.
And I would argue that this lack of respect carries over to other authorities a well. So parents, here is the charge. Let teachers teach and stop undermining their authority. Will they always be right? No, but that too is a valuable lesson for the future. People are not always treated fairly in a job, by others and need to find respectful ways to disagree or obey when they don’t like it.
Even when my teachers were wrong, my parents taught ME to respectfully confront the situation and accept the final authority. This lesson has served me well in life.
Parents, you model respect every time you respond to a complaint or criticism. You have the power to teach your child how to follow directions and solve problems. Now, what will you do with that power?
As they say in frigid Minnesota, “You betcha!”
It has something to do with brown fat deposits in our bodies.
According to Dr. Aaron Cypess of the Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston:
Most fat is “white fat” used to store excess energy and insulate us in the cold. Too much is a problem.
Brown fat is mostly found in newborns, but adults have small deposits of brown fat that carries over from infancy.
Brown fat is the superhero because it burns fat, not stores it!
A chilly room can activate brown fat.
Go outside in the cold and let the brown fat go to work! Use those dumb bells but add temperature training to the mix. See if you can tolerate more cold and let your body work out!
Forget that warm, cozy office with the heater at your feet! Turn it off and keep it chilly. Shiver and produce some heat! Make your work out a walk in brisk weather (not sub zero!) and train your body to tolerate colder air! Its temperature training time!
Some one I know does loving kindness meditations. She thinks about the good qualities of people she knows. Actually, she is engaging in a biblical practice and doesn’t know it. Philippians 4: 8 and 9 says, Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.
We can choose to think about others in a positive light. When we do, we end up happier.
In fact, University of Texas researchers found that when people wrote about their relationships for 20 minutes a day, for three days, they had a better chance of staying together. And when they expressed positive emotions in instant messages, they felt more positive.
If you need to feel more positive towards another, try writing positive things. Then engage in a few acts of kindness like filling up the gas tank, making coffee, or picking up the dry cleaning. Meditate on the good qualities of that person. It will boost your mood and build positive connections. A quick hug, a short back rub… do little things to make the relationship happier.
All of this is simple, but powerful.