Loneliness is the most prevalent and destructive epidemic of contemporary times. Its impact on your physical, emotional and mental health is devastating – as you will discover it is literally a leading cause of premature death -- and its impact on our social health is devastating.
So first of all, please slow down for a few minutes and do your health, productivity and sanity a huge favor and read the following, and then watch this loneliness help interview with today’s leading researcher and author in the field, Dr. John Cacioppo of The University of Chicago.
The go-go faster-faster lifestyle people are trapped in, the desire you may have to merely skim through this quickly and move on to the next thing – and then the next – and then the next – more more more consumption! – is precisely a big part of the problem.
Please do yourself justice and accept this loneliness help.
Spreading Yourself Thin When You're Born to Go Deep
This is not loneliness in the Robinson Crusoe sense of being cut off from the world. The loneliness that almost everyone is suffering from today is of a far more sinister variety, as it is occurring in a world where we have more points of contact and interactions with other people than ever before.
It doesn’t seem like we should be lonely with hundreds or thousands of Facebook “friends,” cell phones, texting, email, the “global economy” and all the rest.
But as I’ve noted often in the Live Deeper newsletter and throughout The 9 Intense Experiences program, we are spreading ourselves thin when we are born to go deep. It’s about the quality of our interactions, not the quantity, but even with what ought to be our closest relationships
– with spouses, siblings, children, parents, good friends – quality is being obliterated.
Feeling lonely, with all of the surprisingly devastating consequences you will discover, is at epidemic levels. But loneliness help is also on the way in the following interview and in Dr. Cacioppo's exceptional book.
Loneliness Questions for You
How many people do you feel you can really talk to about your deepest fears and frustrations, your biggest dreams, and anything personal and sensitive to you?
How many people do you feel really know you on deep level? How many people know the joys and challenges that have been in your heart and mind today, this week, this month?
Consider all of the people that you would say you are closest to in your life. How well do you really know them? Do you know what three things make them most happy? What their three biggest fears are in life? What their biggest regrets are in life to date? What their beliefs on true love, God, and other big questions are?
Whether you are single or married, in your 20s or your 60s, you likely answered at least one of those questions in a less-than-satisfying way.
If you are alive in the Westernized world today, you likely often feel disconnected, isolated, off your path, like no one really knows you, or like you have no one you can really turn to who will care versus judge you …
The Shame of Loneliness?
You may well carry a certain sense of shame for feeling such loneliness: it is not comfortable to acknowledge feeling lonely within yourself, much less share it with others.
In a culture that elevates popularity and fame, and that is supposed to be more connected than ever before, you’re not supposed tofeel lonely! And so when you do communicate with family, friends and others, it’s time to put on that “I’m doing great and everything is fine!” face. And to talk about things like the weather, what this or that celebrity is doing, or anything but what you
really need to talk about with someone.
But there is nothing to be ashamed of for feeling lonely. Again, virtually everyone is experiencing profound loneliness in this day and age. People are just not – surprise, surprise – discussing it publicly. This is not just an anecdotal statement – you will discover in the following interview that loneliness IS, according to research, at epidemic
Two Steps to Your Loneliness Help
Please relax, take a few deep breaths, don’t sabotage yourself by trying to multitask (which studies have found doesn’t work, and contributes to stress) and instead:
A) Focus on my short interview with Dr. John Cacioppo, who is the Director of the Center for Cognitive and Social Neuroscience at The University of Chicago, a Tiffany & Margaret Blake Distinguished Service Professor, and one of the most positive energy people I've ever met.
B) And then order and read Dr. Cacioppo’s book, Loneliness: Human Nature and the Need for Social Connection. As longtime readers of the free IntenseExperiences.com Live Deeper newsletter know, I read (far too) many books, especially in the fields of psychology, neuroscience, sociology, anthropology, health / diet and self-help. Dr. Cacioppo’s Loneliness is one of the five most important and useful books I’ve read in at least
the last decade. It will provide you crucial and fascinating insights that personally matter to you on why loneliness is the plague of our age, and it will also provide you solid guidance on how to overcome loneliness.
I have edited my “loneliness help” interview with Dr. John Cacioppo and present it in segments for your easier accessibility. Again, please do yourself the justice of slowing down and listening to what he has to say … it truly can change your