The Relationship Between Social Isolation,Loneliness & Belonging

The words social isolation and loneliness are often used interchangeably.

Find out why they’re not the same thing.

Here are some key messages from this episode

  • You can be lonely whist surrounded by other people
  • Being socially isolated against your will is damaging
  • Not everyone feels lonely

Play the episode for more.

Here are some key takeaways from this episode

Why Loneliness is Misunderstood

“It’s possible to feel lonely while among other people, and you can be alone yet not feel lonely”

The Difference between Social Isolation and Loneliness

“social isolation is not loneliness and loneliness is not social isolation. 

Not everyone who is socially isolated is lonely and not everyone who is lonely is socially isolated”

Why Social Exclusion May Lead to Loneliness

“If you’re an individual that is being socially excluded, ie socially isolated against your will, we don’t need the research to recognise that that person may have an unpleasant experience”

Here are some resources so you can go deeper

 Smokey Robinson & The Miracles – Tears Of A Clown

Health Effects of Social Isolation and Loneliness

The Cambridge Handbook of Personal Relationships: Chapter 27 Loneliness and Social Isolation

Check out these related episodes of the show

How Social Exclusion Can Lead To Social Inclusion

Why Social Isolation Is Not A New Experience In the Workplace

Whenever you’re ready, there are a few ways I can support your Inclusion Journey:



The Elements of Inclusion #4

Leaders must collaborate innovatively to leverage cultural expertise and drive business performance.

  • Why inclusive outcomes are driven by innovation
  • How developing a business case for diversity and inclusion specific to your organisation is a competitive advantage
  • Why novelty is at the heart of your inclusion journey

The Elements of Inclusion #3

Leaders must establish systems to ensure that everyone shares the same advantages and benefits. These processes will create incentives for inclusive behaviours.

  • How to augment your team with the tools and insights they need to prevent structural disadvantage
  • Why reinforcing generative norms ensures everyone belongs in the organisation
  • How inclusive representations can be embedded to promote an inclusive culture

The Elements of Inclusion #2

Leaders must redefine career development relationships to support inclusive performance.
  • Why traditional mentor relationships must be revised for an inclusive workplace
  • How leaders must embrace networks of developmental relationships for individual growth
  • Why established workplace norms must evolve for inclusion in the modern workplace

The Elements of Inclusion #1

Leaders must properly socialise people and socialise inclusive ideas by providing an environment for the cultural learning needed for an active role in an inclusive organisation

  • How your socialisation processes must evolve to encourage the sustainable cultivation of inclusive competencies
  • Why Leaders must consistently negotiate the line between organisational commitment and personal authenticity to promote performance
  • How developing intersectional self awareness can help leaders to leverage individual employee experiences