Being alone often can stir up a lot of feelings, and if you feel uncomfortable mentally and physically when you're by yourself, it would make sense that you would attribute those feelings to loneliness. However, sometimes loneliness can actually be a sign of anxiety, and getting in touch with the true root of your mental state can help you figure out the best ways to feel better both when you're alone and with others.
"With both anxiety and loneliness on the rise, it can be difficult to tease out what is at the root of particular types of distress," psychologist Doreen Dodgen-Magee, Psy.D tells Bustle. "When feelings that have been identified as loneliness include physiological symptoms such as difficulty breathing, the sensation of a lump in the throat, or heaviness in the chest, or they are accompanied by feelings of dread or hyper-vigilance, it may be that anxiety is actually rearing it’s head. Whether the anxiety results from, causes, or intensifies the loneliness is not nearly as important as naming the fact that it is present and needs to be addressed."
If you think your loneliness is stemming from anxiety, you can try to get in tune with your thoughts and feelings to see if this is the case. Here are seven signs your loneliness may actually be a form of anxiety, according to experts.