Loneliness and Social Media: Life Lessons

by John Zajaros on May 13, 2010

Loneliness is a curse and it not breaks you heart when you experience it, it breaks your heart when you see it in others.

This isn’t my usual “beat,” but I was struck by something today and it prompted me to write about it.

I received a request for a connection today from a woman on one of the many social media sites I belong to. This, in and of itself is not unusual, not at all, I belong to several and I have literally tens of thousands of followers.

But this experience touched me for several reasons, I will explain.

This woman sent me a follow up message after I accepted her invitation with a single word:

“Hi!”

That’s it!

No thanks for connecting. Thanks for following. Or whatever. No link trying to sell me something right off the bat.

Just “Hi!”

So, I was intrigued.

I went to her profile and the only thing on it was a link to a Photobucket page.

Just “Hi!” and a link to her Photobucket page.

I know what you are thinking.

A girl, a singular greeting, it’s got to be porn…right?

The thought entered my mind and I dismissed it. For one thing, I don’t do porn, at all. For another, I am pretty good at seeing and reading between the lines and avoiding that sort of trash.

Anyway, all you had to do is look at this woman and you knew she wasn’t going down that road, she was just reaching out!

So, I went to the Photobucket page and it immediately broke my heart! Here is this human being who is so lonely, so alone, she has picture after picture, page after page, of only herself. Pictures of a woman alone, taken alone…just totally alone.

My heart ached!

Now, these pictures were not poses, they were not narcissistic garbage, they were almost saying:

“Here I am, I am a person, this is me and I want to meet someone, anyone…because I am alone!”

Like I said, it broke my heart!

You know, I take walks almost every day, and almost always every night. I have run across people on my walks so alone, so shut down they are afraid:

Afraid to look up!
Afraid to engage!
Afraid to say hello!
Afraid to live!

The funny thing?

The really sad thing?

It doesn’t matter whether it is day or night, some people walk through life like shadows, barely making an impression on or in the world around them, barely noticed…totally alone!

Where am I going with this?

I don’t know!

I guess all I am saying is that in our search to connect we are missing the main reason why social media is so popular, why people are so willing to connect with total strangers…so many are alone!

Lonely!

Yes, there are the marketers, and they could care less…for the most-part. There are those who merrily link away, happy to push their message, shouting into the wind so everyone, and no one, will hear them.

No one does…they shout away!

But there are also the others, the ones just saying “Hi!” or worse yet those afraid to do so, to even look up, to even smile back…alone and afraid to live!

On my walks I say hello to everyone. I smile at each and every person who passes. Sometimes people ignore me, too into whatever they are thinking about or too afraid I might want something from them. Others are genuinely surprised, it takes them a moment, and then they smile and say hello back. Someone took the time to notice them, to make a real connection, if only for a moment.

And then there are the few, the ones who are alone, really alone!

They are the ones who, for a moment come back to the human race and realize they are not utterly and completely…alone!

Someone noticed, someone acknowledged them…if only for an instant!

They come back.

They are not…alone!

The moral of the story?

I don’t know that there is one!

Just take a moment the next time someone says, “Hi!” or looks up…or doesn’t!

Take a moment to really connect with someone, anyone. You may change a life…if just for one moment.

Remember something, there are men and woman everywhere who are alone and lonely; and, it may only takes a moment’s kindness to make all the difference in the world…perhaps giving them hope…perhaps giving them the strength to say “Hi!” just one more time….perhaps letting them know they are not so completely…alone!

Contact me anytime!

John Zajaros

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Alicia May 15, 2010 at 8:21 am

Inspiring….I receive The Secret Scrolls…and the latest one send to “send joy to everyone you meet” take the time to smile at a stranger, or to say “hi” to everyone you come across. This might be the only person they come in contact with all day. Thanks for sharing!

Reply

coachz9 May 17, 2010 at 6:52 pm

Thank you Alicia! And thank you for taking the time to read and comment!

You are an inspiration to me, as well!

John

Reply

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: