This article originally appeared in Well+Good.
During the pandemic, many of us have experienced being physically alone, and often, to a greater extent than ever before. For some folks, social distancing mandates may have also triggered loneliness—the feeling of being disconnected from others, versus simply the state of being alone. What many don't realize, though, is that loneliness can show up and persist regardless of how many people you might encounter on the daily. This has to do, in large part, with the reality that there are multiple types of loneliness, each with its own cause and effects.
A true sense of interconnectedness—or, the opposite of loneliness—includes many different forms of connection, all of them adding up to the full picture of social health. So, when you’re missing any of these types of connection, you’re also more susceptible to one of the different types of loneliness, even if you’re surrounded by people.