It has been a tough couple days for me and I’ve felt it quite a lot recently. The pain is bordering excruciating and I have realised Loneliness isn’t something I can just mask or make disappear, I have to ride the waves that come with it and there are many ways to do this.
Loneliness affects many people and carries heavy consequences aside from being emotionally painful.
Near enough everyone experiences loneliness from time to time. The feeling can be especially noticeable around the holidays, Valentine’s Day, birthdays, and times of extreme stress.
If you’re experiencing loneliness, here are seven things you can do about it.
Sit With Yourself
Literally, sit with yourself, give yourself a moment to breathe and let out any emotions that need to come out.
If you need to cry, cry.
If you need to scream, scream.
If you need to sing, sing.
If you need to dance, dance.
Expressing emotions is different for all of us. If you sit quiet for a moment your body will know what it needs to do.
Find Support Online
It can be daunting and no one wants to air their sad times on social media or in a facebook group but reach out to someone you trust, a problem shared is a problem halved. Like I said we cant just make loneliness disappear we have to ride it and sometimes we just need a mate to ride it with us a little bit.
There are many people online who are looking for people to connect with. If you can be honest with yourself and reach out you just might find someone to ride this lonely spell with you.
Sharing a small insight to some of the pain I have felt with my followers on Instagram recently really paved the way for some amazing honest conversations with some lovely people, and I wouldn’t have connected with them in such a way if I hadn’t shared my vulnerability. Be open with those you feel comfortable with. Feel free to send me a dm on Insta!
Support doesn’t have to be a big heart to heart all the time, I am big on music as you all know so this uplifting song recommendation from my mate meant a lot. Music recommendations is my LOVE LANGUAGE – value the people in your life that know how to communicate with you when you’re struggling. Ayse <3
Strengthen Existing Relationships
Go and find your people. Sometimes all we need is to be around that friend that likes to give hugs, or that friend of ours that has one liner jokes for days or that friend that can only communicate by roasting us. Either way go and spend some time with them, do something you enjoy with them wether that be having a coffee in a cute little shop, a trip to B&M for some candles or a full on night of getting white girl wasted.
Practice Self Care
Self-care is a common phrase these days when it comes to our general wellbeing, but it can apply to loneliness too. You might not be sure what the term ‘self-care’ means but chances are you’ve done it already in your life without realising. The Oxford Dictionary defines self-care as ‘the practice of taking action to preserve or improves one’s health’, whether that be mental, emotional or physical. Self-care is different for different people but the concept is the same: the idea of taking time to do things that nurture, de-stress and support you. Loneliness can affect us on many levels.
Create a positive To-You gratitude list celebrating all the good things about yourself. It could be what you’re good at, what your friends and family say are your best qualities, compliments people have paid you in the past, what you have been most proud of in your life and all your achievements.
For me, I am all about the self love and gratitude lists and looking after my face with some great skin care products is always a good mood booster. I have some products I am going to share with you all on Instagram so make sure you keep an eye on my stories!
Loneliness is an emotion, mostly triggered by a sad memory. Unfortunately the brain loves to overanalyse things, so even momentary loneliness can escalate to longer spells because of thoughts like “Why do I feel so alone?” and “Am I a loser no one loves?” When this happens, just acknowledge the feeling and don’t overreact. Find something to do, entertain yourself, not those thoughts.
Over the past few year, millions have understandably been hit by feelings of loneliness, but as the country has reopened and people got back to their normal lives, many still remain with feelings of isolation that they have found difficult to shake.
According to research from the GLL Better Gym company (which I use and champion for their great facilities and low cost memberships) 9 in 10 people across the UK have said that since the pandemic, exercise has helped reduce feelings of loneliness, improved their mental/physical health, increased feelings of calm, made them feel more energised and connected them to communities and friends.
Being around others – whether family, friends, your local community, or even your fellow gym members – clearly has a positive and healthy impact on our mental health, and is now something we can do a lot more of since restrictions were lifted.
Some days might not be ‘gym’ days but any form of exercise will surely help lessen the feeling of loneliness.
So many people have felt the sharp pain of loneliness at one point or another during their life, it was especially rife during those unprecedented covid lockdown times. Isolation, social distancing, and not seeing people smile can cause extreme psychological effects, increasing our loneliness and feelings of angst. If you feel lonely, you are not alone.
The fact is, human beings need each other. Human connection, touch, hugs, smiles, and togetherness are part of what fulfills us. As pack animals, we are not designed to be alone or isolated. Instead, we need community, companionship, and support to thrive.
Loneliness can happen with a lack of company but there are many times where we can be surrounded by people, or in a relationship and still feel lonely. But being alone isn’t always a bad thing because aloneness (or solitude) will often help us figure out who we are and what we need.
Isolation can be a spiritual experience if we allow for it. The point of this guide is to be able to be alone but not lonely. When you can enjoy your own company and be one with yourself, you can feel peace from within.
Using affirmations is a powerful way to refocus your energy away from what does not feel good and align back to the truth, which is that you are loved and cared for always.
Here are my top 3 affirmations that you can use whenever you need to. I personally find these most helpful on days when I am overcome by loneliness and struggle to communicate or get out of the house. I tend to use them as a starting point to build up to using the other techniques listed here.
I am comfortable in silence. I am confident and comfortable when doing things by myself. I have overcome many obstacles. I can overcome this too.
Developing the capacity to be alone means developing a greater tolerance for and intimacy with yourself and your experience. Highly recommend using this one to help get comfortable being alone with yourself.
I am full of self-love. I do not depend on external validation to feel good.
I remember a therapist once telling me, “The longest relationship you’ll ever have in your life is the one with yourself. So why not try to have a better relationship with yourself?” Romantic relationships end, people die, but you’re with yourself always.
I acknowledge my loneliness for what it is and I don’t fight it. At the same time, I do not let it consume me. My light is too bright.
Your light is so bright, maybe that’s why it’s been hard? Sometimes we have to spend time alone to gather strength and then make new connections, are you retreating to isolation and loneliness because your circle are trying to dim you? Could be a factor, just putting it out there.
What you read is so important. Think about the things you read when you’re mindlessly scrolling, it’s all being taken in whether you’re conscious of it or not. Those self loathing memes you occasionally encounter on Instagram? Yeah you are consuming them and processing them. Clear your feeds and think about what you actually want to consume. What do you want to fill yourself up with? Do you want to learn something? Do you want to get lost in fiction and dissociate for a while? (no judgement here)
Check out some of these positive writings and give yourself a good start by being mindful of what you are reading and consuming.
Changing our perception of loneliness can have a game-changing effect. Instead of seeing loneliness as something empty, or a lack in your life, imagine it as a blank slate on which to build new experiences, friendships and interests. It might take a bit of effort when you’ve been feeling a certain way for so long but keep going. We’re not defined by what happens to us in life but how we react – and putting a positive take on our loneliness definitely helps!
Stay safe and take care,
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