10 Things To Do When You’re Feeling Lonely
Loneliness. It has been called the silent killer because its effects are not immediately visible and everyone shies away from discussing it. We have all suffered/or will suffer from loneliness at one time or another. Loneliness can destroy people slowly but steadily if not dealt with.
Loneliness is not to be confused with being alone. Psychologists say that loneliness is a state of mind which produces anxiety and feels draining, which is why you can feel lonely on your first day of school/work or when you arrive in a new city where you know no one. A lack of connection can leave us feeling lonely no matter how many other people are in the room.
Being alone on the other hand, is a state of being, and the right setting can actually reduce anxiety, feel restorative and peaceful. Think of it as a time to clear your head and/or catch your breath, much like a tired stay-at-home mom of quadruplets taking the day off to go on a solo spa date.
Loneliness causes emotional distress. It is therefore very important that you acknowledge your feelings and deal with them accordingly. After acknowledging those feelings, the next step would be to take the bull by the horns and below are just a few examples of how that bull’s horns can be handled.
1.Please know that you are not alone in feeling lonely
We have all been there. It’s not your fault that you are feeling that way and also it is normal to feel lonely from time to time. Life and situations are different for everyone and things can get tough from time to time. When we are going through a difficult season, we often think that we are the only ones going through it. That is never the case though as there are always people going through even worse times than you. You are not alone in this.
2.Avoid blaming yourself
Chances are that things happened and you found yourself in that lonely situation. Everyone wants the best for themselves, so it should be very clear that it is not your fault that you are going through that difficult season. Everyone goes through a difficult season, it just looks different from one person to another. Also note that, that too, shall pass.
3.Connect with people online/social media
Although scrolling through social media can make you feel worse about your situation, it can be good for you during those lonely times. It helps to go through social media knowing that people don’t show you everything and therefore you should scroll with an open mind. Scroll through your “friends’” stories, comment on them and start conversations. I have come to realize that social media is one place where you can form friendships with like-minded people. Also talking to strangers can be very therapeutic.
4.Journal and write your feelings down
Writing our feelings down means that we have acknowledged them and are willing to put in the work to feel better. Journaling works wonders in that when we go back to read our entries in the future, we realize that we survived a difficult time which will in turn make you feel like a conqueror.
While at it you can also share what you are going through on www.bonga.or.ke . Here you will find validation and confirmation that you are not alone in what you are going through. Besides, a problem shared is a problem half solved.
5.Get a pet / Play with a pet
Having pets around you give you the sense of responsibility and when you have a cute, cuddly dog or cat to take care of it will make you feel like you’re doing at least one thing right seeing as pets depend wholly on you for survival.
Playing with a pet will also help you release some endorphins and just make you feel better.
6.Read a book
Books, (novels especially) can help you escape into someone else’s reality and what better way to escape from your own reality for a few hours? Reading self-help books can help you deal with your issues differently. Somehow they can help you figure out how to fix your life for your own good.
7.Connect with nature
They say that in nature, nothing is perfect and everything is perfect. This makes it the perfect space to be in, especially during a lonely season. You will fit right in, breathing in the fresh air, listening to the birds chirping and other beautiful sounds of nature and admiring how trees continue to stand tall despite the season they are in. Soaking up the sun, the breeze, the sound of water and air can become a magical experience. Take off your shoes and feel the grass under your feet. Being in nature will help you appreciate everything, including your current situation.
8.Watch some comedy
Watch comedy and laugh your heart out. Even if it is not that funny and then listen to the beautiful sound of your laughter. After hearing yourself laugh, laugh out loud some more and fall in love with that sound. That is free therapy right there.
TikToks must be included here as there are some hilarious TikToks out there.
9.Listen to sad songs
Listening to sad songs can help you feel so much better as some sad songs provide us with a reflection of our own feelings. Sad songs will allow you to feel all the feels and help you release all the pent up emotions as you cry it all out.
Singing reduces anxiety and improves your mood. It floods your brain with endorphins which are the same feel-good brain chemicals we get from exercise. It is very effective as a stress reliever and improves sleep. Singing also improves your heart rate while keeping your cortisol levels low. So, sing your heart out! Even if you are the worst singer in the world. Sing!
Make plans for the future with a friend/sibling or even with yourself and make sure to go through with it. This will give you something to look forward to.