I recently wrote an article reporting the fact that people who live alone are more prone to suffering from poor mental health due to experiencing loneliness. While this may be a frightening thing to consider, it’s important to note that anybody, regardless of their living situation, can experience loneliness. In fact, we probably all go through bouts of suffering from the feeling at different points during our lives.
However, despite the fact that so many people suffer from loneliness, not a lot of people like to talk about it. This is down to the fact that, once again, talking about how we feel and the things that we are experiencing is often seen to be ‘taboo’. We’re made to feel ashamed of speaking out and seeking help, so we tend not to.
Left untreated, loneliness can lead to a number of other health problems, including suffering from depression to experiencing literal physical pain. Here are a few strategies you could try if you find yourself feeling chronically lonely.
Join A Club, A Group, Or A Class
Wherever your interests lie, there’s probably a group or a club that revolves around it. Whether you prefer to go fishing, put a pencil to a pad of paper, or simply exercise, joining a group, a club, or a class can really make all the difference.
Joining a group provides you with a sense of belonging and gives you the opportunity to connect with people who have similar interests. This can, in all, make you feel a lot less alone and somewhat encourages you to make friendships with those who also partake in the class. Plus, it’s something that you can look forward to and something to motivate yourself for.
So why not look into that book club or find out when your gym’s next yoga class is? You could find that it benefits you much more than you think.
Make Use Of Online Support
The internet can sometimes seem like a daunting place, but it actually provides a whole range of resources to help you cope with feeling lonely. There are now numerous sites that offer free, or at least affordable, online therapy options and there are multiple apps that have been created to help you manage loneliness and anxiety.
7 Cups Of Tea is a perfect example of an online therapy and counselling service that aims to connect people with caring listeners who are willing to talk. It’s anonymous and offers free 24/7 chat options if you need somebody to have a conversation with. Not only can it make you feel better, but it can also work to remind you that you’re not alone and that other people can relate to you.
Likewise, starting a blog or a group on social media can do wonders on connecting you with people who understand what you’re going through.
Try Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
Sometimes talking to somebody just isn’t enough and you can still be left feeling just as lonely as you did beforehand. Even if you’re working to combat your loneliness and you’re trying to get in touch with the people around you, research has shown that lonely people tend to maintain their loneliness to a degree.
If this happens to be the case for you, it’s a good idea to do some searching and find a psychotherapist who can help you deal with these feelings. Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is one of the best forms of therapy that works to help you change your thought patterns and alter your way of thinking. CBT helps you come up with strategies to better manage your loneliness and prevent feeling overwhelmed.
It’s important to remember that sometimes we can’t go it alone, and it’s perfectly okay to seek additional help such as therapy.
Do you happen to suffer from loneliness, or have you experienced it in the past? What strategies help you cope?