Feeling lonely is something everyone can relate to at some point. Loneliness is an uncomfortable feeling you might get when you’re alone. Even before the pandemic, many people reported feeling lonely most of the time.
But the way you react to loneliness can make an enormous difference in how it impacts you. In other words, how you deal with this emotion can either be a rewarding experience or a torturous one. It’s up to you.
“Be a loner. That gives you time to wonder, to search for the truth. Have holy curiosity. Make your life worth living.”
— Albert Einstein
You don’t need to be an introvert to savor your alone time. Fortunately, even the most extroverted person can learn how to thrive in solitude.
What issues can feeling lonely cause?
“If you’re lonely when you’re alone, you’re in bad company.”
— Jean-Paul Sartre
Feeling lonely can be destructive to your physical and mental health.
It will worsen depression and intensify anxiety. Furthermore, it’ll take your physical health down as well.
Possible health risks of feeling lonely:
- Lowered immunity to illness
- Heart disease
These issues arise from how you perceive solitude and not necessarily from being alone. Even if your friends are with you, you can still suffer the effects of loneliness.
That’s why it’s so essential to handle this emotion the right way so you can take advantage of it instead. So, let’s get into it!
How to defeat or take advantage of feeling lonely:
1. Change your opinion of feeling lonely
”We need solitude, because when we’re alone, we’re free from obligations, we don’t need to put on a show, and we can hear our own thoughts.”
— Tamim Ansary
Many artists and writers have isolated themselves so they can fine-tune their craft throughout time.
There are many advantages you can only get from being by yourself like the following:
- More imagination and creativity
- Learn more about yourself
- More time to improve skills
- Increase self-esteem and confidence
- Better ability to plan for the future
- Reduce your need for approval
So, simply changing how you feel about being alone can make all the difference. Then when you’re around others, you’ll feel more confident. Furthermore, your happiness won’t depend on others always being there.
2. Feeling lonely is a signal that you need to reconnect with yourself
“Loneliness is the poverty of self; solitude is the richness of self.”
— May Sarton
Loneliness is a disconnection not from other people but from ourselves.
Interacting with others is healthy but neglecting yourself has consequences. Being around people is a distraction from loneliness. But at the end of the day, that awful feeling will be waiting.
We need to reconnect with who we are and start enjoying our time in blissful solitude.
3. Spend time outside to defeat feeling lonely
“Great men are like eagles, and build their nest on some lofty solitude.”
— Arthur Schopenhauer
Absorb some vitamin D from the sunshine, and your outlook on life will improve. If you deprive yourself of it, you’ll acquire several more problems.
Symptoms of vitamin D deficiency:
- Feeling tired all the time
- Aches and pains
- Muscle weakness
So, make it a point to get outside for a few minutes every day, and your mental health will thank you for it.
4. Name 3 things you’re grateful for every morning
5. Workout a bit every day
“You cannot be lonely if you like the person you’re alone with.”
— Wayne Dyer
Even though exercise might not be your idea of a fun time, it can give your mood a rejuvenating boost. Whether you decide to do some pushups and squats at home or if you go for a quick jog, you reap the rewards over time. So, make it a habit to exercise, and you’ll ensure that you and your mood are always in great shape.
6. Start journaling and stop feeling lonely
“People who take the time to be alone usually have depth, originality, and quiet reserve.”
— John Miller
Journaling is as old as writing. The ancient Stoics spoke of the many advantages journaling has for people. You’ll learn so much about who you are just by writing for a few minutes every day. So, it’s well worth your time to practice documenting your days and venting your frustrations.
7. Make money instead of feeling lonely
“Without great solitude no serious work is possible.”
— Pablo Picasso
Otherwise, you can check out Fiverr and get paid to put your talents to good use.
8. Take an online course and learn something new
“The happiest of all lives is a busy solitude.”
If you want to have a sharp mind, keep yourself busy and challenged during these precious alone times. One of the best activities to do this is to learn a new skill. Think of all the things you’ve wanted to know but never had the time. Then google it and see what’s out there. There are thousands of online courses to choose from, so you’re sure to find what you want to know. Besides, it might be profitable someday.
9. Read more to escape feeling lonely.
“The best thinking has been done in solitude.”
— Thomas A. Edison
Many adverse effects of loneliness are due to a lack of mental stimulation. That’s why it’s critical to read a book for at least 15 minutes every day.
Plus, you’ll get a feeling of accomplishment and a wealth of knowledge when you finish it. Luckily, you can escape reality and loneliness by diving into unlimited Kindle books!
Or you can listen to audiobooks while you’re in your car.
10. Reach out to family or old friends
“Solitude is the beginning of all freedom.”
— William Orville Douglas
In the past, a social circle was a large group of people that you would see frequently. That is not always the case anymore. These days, we might see friends once a month or much less. But no matter how often we see them, they still provide an essential aspect of our lives. Friends enrich our lives and help us understand life better through their perspectives.
So, it’s essential to at least call or video chat with loved ones often. This tripod will hold your phone and improve the lighting, so you look great in video calls or selfies.
In short, being alone doesn’t mean you need to feel lonely. People throughout time have been alone, but it doesn’t have to be torture. In fact, you can have fun diving into your hobbies, planning your future, or using your creativity.
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If you’re feeling depressed, don’t hesitate to reach out for free emotional support. You won’t be alone forever, but now you have the tools to stop feeling lonely.