Negative connotations of being alone and looking within | INFJ Forum

Featured Negative connotations of being alone and looking within

Discussion in 'Relationships and Sociology' started by JustPhil, Nov 23, 2019.

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  1. JustPhil

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    I have lately been taking more notice of the negative connotations of the word alone or of people looking inside themselves.

    I am quite surprised at how much my friends and relatives all look at being alone or looking inside as being almost abhorrent.

    At lunch with an old friend today she met another friend who's husband had died many years ago. She still had no partner, as my friend stated after she left "she's been alone for many years. Sad really". I turned around and asked whether she might actually be content being by herself. My friend looked a little aghast at the idea.

    My mum used to chide me when I said I needed space and time to think. She always said it was "dangerous" to think too much.

    Another friend mocks me for me being without a partner. Its a friendly mocking, but it still comes to the same thing, you are without someone in your life, therefore you missing something.

    Other friends have quite often stated that there is no point in thinking or having feelings about things. Do something, anything to not be thinking too much about the past or future.

    Now I'm all for a little staying in the present moment, but I also feel that rumination and looking into the future can be beneficial as long as it is not causing emotional pain.

    Is it so bad being alone or going inside to think things through? I don't think so, but I feel a lot of society tries its hardest to move away from feeling alone or looking inside and seeing what is there. I read somewhere that is because we try to avoid hurt. Looking inside brings up thoughts that perhaps we don't want to deal with, thoughts that might put us on a slide into melancholy. Or being alone hurts so do anything to avoid that, even if it means getting a partner, any partner to avoid that hurt.

    Just wondering if anyone else has noticed that there are so many people out there that react so negatively about loneliness and looking inside oneself? I have found myself that as long as you can work through the pain there is a lot of growth and learning that can be had from being alone as well as looking inside.
     
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  2. Wyote

    Wyote ○●○
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    Usually when people tell you how to live your life it's because they have no idea how to live theirs
     
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  3. MINFJToothFairy

    MINFJToothFairy Nope. Not a dentist.
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    Yes. All of this. Actually what's most difficult to explain to many is that when I lived by myself, I was perfectly fine. I mean I had my issues, but I found my peace and my solitude in my alone time so much that often the idea of being in serious relationships is more daunting to me than being alone. I used to think this was a coping mechanism, but i'm not sure. Yes, when I was living alone, I did want a partner every time the plumbing went crazy or when I didn't want to wash dishes (which was often) but something about being alone was also quietly empowering. I wouldn't trade those days for anything else.

    Way back, over beer with a senior colleague, he bellowed -almost an order- that I should marry. He said I'm in my 30s and by asian standards, 30 pretty much is 50 to the boomers. I have no time. He was aghast that I didn't seem to have plans. It's not that I don't have plans, it's just that the chance hasn't been mine. It hasn't been a clear direction yet in my life. I wonder why people think that's so bad. But they really do.

    They keep telling me, no one will take care of you when you're older. I didn't agree. I can't agree. We don't make offsprings to have them take care of us when we're grey and I've seen how bad parenting makes people far off more alone than most. So, sorry society, i disagree with you on this one.
     
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  4. MINFJToothFairy

    MINFJToothFairy Nope. Not a dentist.
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    @JustPhil this is a youtube channel for the impossibly in love. I'll post this here just to tease you. Haha

    (Please don't be mad for real)
     
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  5. java

    java Community Member

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    This reminds me of some experiment that was done:
    I dont know if it's really because people want to avoid looking into themselves or self-reflect... I'm not sure it's because they are afraid of what they'll find. In some cases, it probably is, but to stop here may be too simplistic.
    In the case of finding a significant other, I think it might also have to do with not knowing what they want. They see others around them enjoying this style of living, and so they think they need it too. In most cases, they are probably right, but we have all seen people in unhealthy relationships. This may be how they take decisions in other spheres of their lives too, like career choices or hobbies. And it's not always bad to do what everyone else is doing. If everyone is doing it, it's because there is some good in it.

    Is looking inside ourselves necessary to know what we want? It may be one way to achieve it, and it seems most introverts usually have clear opinions about some things they want or don't want. But being more receptive to the opinions of others, being more conformist and mimicking what others do may be another path to it. They say as children, we first learn by mimicking our parents. We have no other reference, so we mimick their emotions, their language, and then we play games where we pretend we're adults.

    If someone isn't particularly imaginative, sensitive or attentive to his emotional or psychological states, then will he benefit from sitting alone, picturing himself in x or y situation? Maybe he'll learn more from experimenting a situation first hand.

    I keep hearing this point too, but isn't that what retirement homes are for? Unless they mean that no one will visit you when you're older. Then, yeah, maybe this sucks, but really? You're going to have children for that?
    However, I think some asian cultures have this tradition of bringing your parents to live at your own house when they are old, right?
     
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  6. Pin

    Pin "Magnificent Bastard" / Ren's Counterpart

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    I spent a lot of time alone this week to get work done and it was nice. Honestly though, I'd rather be out doing things with people.

    A sedentary life that's spent behind a screen is a shame.
     
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  7. Pin

    Pin "Magnificent Bastard" / Ren's Counterpart

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    Well, think about why you want a partner. Reproduction? Companionship?

    If it's all of those things then you've got to get to work on your fitness and finances.

    And God blessed them; and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it; and rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”
    -Genesis 1:28
     
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  8. Asa

    Asa Resident palindrome

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    Hi @JustPhil, welcome to being an Intuitive in a world of Sensors. Have a seat.

    But yes, all of those examples of being solitary and deep are undesirable and anti status quo.

    I can't help but think of how Emma Watson claims she is "self-partnered" because being "single" has a negative connotation.

    I don't have time to write more now, but I just wanted to drop in to say that you are not alone.
     
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  9. Aneirin

    Aneirin plotting a new course
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    I've been spending a lot of time alone. . it has been very healing. There is a lot about myself that needs attention and much inner work to do. Alone is really the only way to accomplish it.
     
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  10. OP
    JustPhil

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    I am fit but not "buff" and I care little for money, other than what supports me. Are you saying that I require both to find a partner? I really don't think I do. I truly think that love transcends all the material things. That said I have to agree that many many women I have talked to think that money is high on the list of things that make them "secure". Men too (right Pin :relaxed:) but I'm talking about what I have experienced in my search for a partner :)

    I would love to hear what you have to say Asa. I think you have some wonderful insights to offer. I do take a lot of notice of your posts on other threads as they do hit the mark on thoughts I have. Also thoughts I haven't had yet, if you know what I mean ie my thinking did not go down THAT path and it gives food for thought. :)

    I agree! There is always a thought in the back of my mind that I perhaps will go "too deep" one day with inner work. Being alone at that time may not be the best thing :/

    I think I have lately cut out a lot of the extraneous interruptions. Things like TV, video games, texting and the like have all lost interest. Instead I walk and connect with nature (as much as that is possible around here - there are parks etc but it is not true nature).

    I get lonely from time to time, but I have thought that if I am content within myself that I should be OK with being alone.

    I will say that many years ago I couldn't abide being alone. I couldn't look inside myself. I was scared too - quite often i would have depressive episodes, which made things worse. But since my depression seems to have stopped I now relish it. I've looked inside and, whereas before I was scared of what might look back, now I am OK with it. When I say people are scared of looking within, I suppose I mean they are scared of seeing how much they have deceived themselves over the years. How they have put on a mask and how different their external aspect is to their internal aspect. I think that was what it was with me. I thought I needed to be someone else for so many years, and peeking inside I was scared and probably disgusted to find who I truly was. So I kept shutting it out. About three years ago I had a bit of an epiphany and have been working things through. I now think my external aspect more closely matches that of my internal aspect and feel so much more at peace and feel that I am now growing again.

    That is why, I suppose, I think that others look inside less. To reconcile who they are outside versus inside is just too great a gap to jump.
     
  11. Xanadu

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    Modern society encourages extrovert personalities and most people thinks being an introvert is the same as being shy.
    Like if you can’t be seen or heard you don’t exist.

    While it’s a friendly mocking they think “why can’t he/she find a partner, what’s wrong?”

    Back when humans lived in packs people very much needed each other for pure survival, being alone and an outcast most likely meant death.
    It’s an old basic survival instinct to be a part of a group.
     
  12. Hostarius

    Hostarius I N I T I U M

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    Introverts aren't actually 'alone', though... there is a social function to it.

    The shaman at the edge of the village who dispenses one-on-one wisdom is a role that probably coevolved with introversion, in my hunch.
     
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  13. Xanadu

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    I don’t think an introvert is alone.
     
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  14. Hostarius

    Hostarius I N I T I U M

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    I beg your pardon.
     
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  15. Xanadu

    Xanadu Newbie

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    Stop it ☺️
    Guess I need to work on my texting skills...
    Just by being an introvert doesn’t make you alone.
     
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  16. Hostarius

    Hostarius I N I T I U M

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    No I mean, literally 'I beg your pardon'. As in 'oh my bad, dude - I didn't want to put words in your mouth'.
     
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  17. Professor Snep

    Professor Snep Smart. Sexy. Snep.

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    In the eyes of many being alone equals being a sad old git.
     
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  18. OP
    JustPhil

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    English manners :tearsofjoy:
     
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  19. Pin

    Pin "Magnificent Bastard" / Ren's Counterpart

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    Well, it's fine to be a nice guy n' all but you've got to turn women on.

    You might not be buff now but don't stop lifting bro! Get buff.

    You might not be rich now but don't stop working bro! Get rich.

    When you become great, women will literally chase you down and you'll have your pick of who you want to marry. It's a totally different dynamic from what the vast majority of men are used to.

    Love... I don't know what to tell you right now.
     
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  20. OP
    JustPhil

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    We are such different people @Pin :tearsofjoy: but it is nice to see how other people think. Their views on life and how it should be played out.

    I suppose I'd like to think that women aren't as materialistic as that, but we are a hotch potch of all types.
     
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