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There is a big difference between being "alone" and being "lonely."  Alone means by yourself, on your own. It's not a bad thing.  In fact, most of us need some time alone occasionally. It may be good to have a break from the friends we hang around with all of the time.  Being by ourselves can be rewarding, because it gives us a chance to get in touch with our deepest thoughts and feelings. And, flying solo can allow us to pursue interests that our friends do not share.  Being on your own can also help you explore your independence.  Participating in activities that do not involve your friends or family give you a way to define yourself as an individual. 

Loneliness is about feeling left out, invisible, or disconnected from others.  You can feel lonely all by yourself or in a room full of people.  Being lonely is never fun and can be very painful.  If you feel lonely, it is normal to retreat from the world but this never really helps.  Make the effort to reach out to someone.  Don't stay isolated.  This might be hard for you to believe but everyone has these feelings from time to time.  Adults, teens, everyone!

Try your best to get outside of yourself.  Don't just focus on YOU! Talk too someone in one of your classes who seems friendly and invite this person to do something with you outside of school.  Call a friend you  have lost touch with.  Email an acquaintance from camp or summer program.  Volunteer for a community service agency.  Connecting with others will help lessen the feelings of isolation and loneliness.  It may feel awkward or weird to talk to other people about this especially when you  are feeling low but it is the best thinking you can do for yourself.  If your feelings of loneliness continue do not hesitate to talk with a parents, teacher, your counselor, or a coach.


                             "Be able to be alone."

                                                            ~Sir Thomas Browne~