Solving Loneliness – 7 Things You Can Do Against Loneliness
How can you solve your loneliness? As always: by taking small steps in the right direction. These 7 tips can help you reduce your loneliness.
1. You are not alone
Loneliness is a necessary but unpleasant emotion. It gives us the feeling that we are cut off from the rest, that we are not good enough, and that we are missing something.
That feeling of loneliness can move us to take action, resolve that loneliness, and connect more. But unfortunately, that’s not always as easy as it sounds, leaving you mostly feeling rotten and miserable.
Loneliness can make you feel like you’re different from everyone else. That you are unique in your lonely feelings.
But of course, it isn’t. Loneliness is common. Everyone is lonely from time to time. That’s okay. It feels shitty, so you probably want to get rid of those feelings. I don’t blame you.
Let’s see what you can do about it.
2. Your feelings of loneliness are not facts
No. Loneliness is subjective. It’s an emotion. A feeling that comes and goes. You may feel lonely while having a busy social life. And you can feel perfectly happy being alone.
There are roughly two reasons why you experience loneliness:
- You experience emotional loneliness. You have enough social contacts, but you still feel lonely.
- You experience social isolation. You feel lonely because you simply don’t have enough social contact in a day.
If you experience emotional loneliness, you can make the situation better by increasing your self-love. If you experience social isolation, you can take steps to spend more time with others.
Let’s take a closer look.
3. Don’t dwell on your sense of loneliness
No. As said: loneliness is a feeling. Not a fact. You are not lonely – you experience feelings of loneliness. That’s a subtle but important difference.
Feelings can change quickly – who and what you are cannot.
For starters, it can work well to distract yourself from the feeling of loneliness. Because the longer you sit on it and brood, the bigger it gets. Don’t give it all your attention, but look ahead.
. Millions of people have been able to resolve their feelings of loneliness. And you will too. That takes some time and effort – but that’s okay. You can.
Come on – you’ve been in front of hotter fires, haven’t you?
4. Develop self-love
Yes – self-love is a solution to emotional loneliness. It’s actually a solution to almost all the things you struggle with. Self-love is so fundamental to your mental health that it really deserves more of your attention.
Because how is it possible that you feel lonely when you are surrounded by people? Well – you can if you don’t feel good enough. When you see yourself as a loser, as worthless.
Again, these are not facts. They are beliefs that you carry with you. Beliefs in dire need of an update.
So let’s update them. You are good the way you are. You’re not perfect, and neither am I. And that’s okay. You have qualities that make you happy. You have qualities that make you cry a little. And that’s how it is – for all of us.
You deserve love – even if you sometimes make mistakes. Even if you only make mistakes. You deserve love because you are part of our society, of the human family. The whole web of life that originated from a few first cells, somewhere 3.8 billion years ago.
You are unique, and at the same time so the same as me. We’re not that different inside. We all need love. And love begins with self-love. In healing your own wounds and updating your beliefs about yourself.
5. Make it a project
Self-love is one thing, and it will take you a while to build it up. Fine.
As you work on that, ask yourself this question: “What small, positive step can I take today to reduce my sense of loneliness?”
And beware – eating chocolate alone is not a positive step.
What can you do to feel a little less lonely?
- Maybe you could invite someone over for coffee?
- Can you call someone?
- Maybe you can make an appointment with someone.
There is one thing that scares us, but that can solve our loneliness in one fell swoop. And that is making yourself vulnerable:
“Hey [friend, colleague, or family member], I’ve been feeling a little lonely lately. Could I have dinner with you this week? Maybe we can cook together or something.”
What would you answer if someone close to you asked you this? I’m guessing: yes of course, you’re always welcome.
You may not dare to ask because you feel proud or because you are ashamed. But everyone knows what loneliness feels like. We know it. So there is nothing to be ashamed of. Ask for help – be vulnerable.
If you find it difficult to do this on your own, hire someone. A person or an organization that can help you further.
Take those small steps that make the situation better – or at least less bad. It gives you confidence, relief, and strength to move forward step by step.
6. Get better at sharing and giving
Shift your attention to the needs of other people. How can you do your best to help others? By helping others you kill a few birds with one stone:
- You can work on your loneliness because you spend time with others in a positive way.
- You can help your loved ones, which may make them a little happier. And that gives a good feeling.
- Helping makes you feel useful and valuable, which boosts your confidence.
- Because you can make others happier, you experience a lot of satisfaction.
- Others like to hang out with you because you are nice to them.
You can help in different ways. You can offer your help with practical matters, such as shopping, gardening, cleaning up, or babysitting. But you can do more.
How about listening with full attention? Or be attentive when it counts. For example, by sending a message after a friend’s first day at work, or by being there for that friend who is in burnout and prefers just to have someone around but doesn’t dare to ask.
But you can also sign up for volunteer work that you enjoy. There are a lot of ways you can share and give. And it is a highway to happiness, satisfaction, self-confidence, and less loneliness.
7. Don’t expect perfection
No. If you suffer from loneliness, with small steps and some help you can move forward quickly. But not all of that progress is permanent. Sometimes you take two steps forward and fall one step back.
That’s okay. It doesn’t have to be perfect. Loneliness will occasionally return. And you may notice that it becomes less and less intense. And after a few months, you realize that you haven’t felt lonely for a week.
That’s progress. But it doesn’t all come at once. You have to keep working on it. And that’s okay – because this work helps you grow inside at the same time.
Working on your sense of loneliness means taking good care of yourself. You are worthy of feeling happy and connected to the world around you. Your first step today was to read this article. What will your next small step be?
Looking for more advice to solve loneliness?
Good idea. If you understand your loneliness better, you can better solve it. The tips above can help you a long way.
Do you need more help? Below you will find links to other websites and organizations that approach loneliness from different angles.