I go through these phases where sometimes I’m afraid to be alone and other times I crave social isolation.
In those times where I feel like I simply just can’t be alone, it’s not really a desire to constantly be with someone, but more of a burning necessity. I actually experience this intense need to be with someone at all times. During this phase, I think I’m trying to escape my thoughts as best as possible. And by having someone there as a distraction, I’m able to do so. But, it gets exhausting.
Then there is the other phase, which I was experiencing last week, where I want nothing else than to be alone. I still find my mind endlessly racing from one thought to another but I just feel like I don’t have the energy to be around people.
During this time, I disconnect from my phone & distance myself from my loved ones. Spending less time on my screen is good for me. I never really noticed how attached I was to it until I recognized the other day that I was getting anxiety because my battery died. Really? Five seconds without access to my messages and I’m already stressing?
However, isolating myself from the people who love me? I don’t think that’s too healthy. But I continue to do it. I stay home instead of spending time with my friends & family. If I do make plans, I end up cancelling. I’m not proud of this. And my friends know this. Then they get mad & rightfully so. I would be upset too if I set aside time for someone and they ended up bailing. I don’t know how to express how I’m feeling to them though.
When I get into this state I don’t have any interest to text people back. In today’s society, I feel like there is this expectation to instantly be accessible through text messaging and when you don’t respond right away, people get offended. This does ultimately cause me to worry because I’m scared I’m going to lose my friends if I don’t get back to them right away. Yet I continue to stay isolated in my own little bubble.
It’s not that I don’t want to spend time with them. I just don’t have the energy to do so. I’ll just keep trying to come up with excuses as to why I can’t hang out with them and eventually, they’ll stop reaching out. Why would people continue to reach out to me if I don’t make an effort to see them? This thought really hurts when I think about it because I don’t want my loved ones to feel like I don’t care about them. I so badly wish I wanted to be with them when I’m going through this state of mind but instead, I have a longing to be by myself.
There are times when I’m going through this ‘depressive’ episode where I will push through my desire to be alone. I’ll make an extra effort to go out with my friends. But afterwards, I find myself feeling mentally and physically drained.
I know isolating myself long-term is not good for my mental health or my personal relationships, so I’m trying to find ways to fight through it. I’ve noticed that going out & partying, although fun & exciting in the moment, are usually what causes my mental & physical exhaustion. This fatigue is what triggers me to withdraw socially for a long period of time. However, when I do things that are good for the soul & peaceful for my mind, such as going on a hike or walking on the beach with a friend, I feel uplifted.
By practicing self-care and disconnecting from the world for a little bit from time to time, instead of feeling burnt out from being with people, I’ll be rejuvenated and ready to thoroughly enjoy the moments with the people I love most.