Involuntary loneliness is dangerous
Involuntary loneliness is dangerous because man evolved to belong to a herd that depends on each other. When we become involuntarily lonely, a warning system goes off in the brain that causes the stress hormones in the body to skyrocket. This in turn causes high blood pressure and risk of diseases such as heart attack, dementia, stroke and can give rise to depression.
Later research has shown that the brain quickly starts to alarm, so you don’t have to be involuntarily alone for long before the warning system sets it off in the body.
It is not dangerous to be alone
Researchers have concluded that it is not the loneliness itself that is dangerous, it is the feeling of being alone, of not being seen and listened to. Loneliness can be experienced to a great extent both when you are at a workplace or in a private context together with other people.
We can help each other by listening to another person. Something as simple as listening and asking a follow-up question can reduce feelings of loneliness and help turn off the alarm in your brain. In the workplace it should be a matter of course to greet your colleagues in the morning and when you have time you can stop and ask a question. In meetings, you ensure that everyone has the opportunity to speak and that you listen without interrupting.
It makes everyone feel seen and listened to and together you counteract the dangerous involuntary loneliness.
Source: American College of Cardiology