As a psychotherapist, I often hear how lonely and isolated people feel. Even if married or successful in their careers, many people carry a painful sense of disconnection and alienation.
Here are some things that may be contributing to your loneliness and fueling the epidemic of loneliness in today’s society.
1. Criticizing People
John Gottman’s research into what makes partnerships thrive highlights criticism as one factor that leads to breakups, along with contempt, stonewalling, and defensiveness.
As an interesting exercise, notice how often you silently or actively judge others. Many of us have grown up with so much criticism, whether at home, in school, or while playing sports, that it feels normal to be judged. But criticism hurts — a hurt we may deal with by protecting ourselves and not showing our true feelings and desires.