Hi Friends, I hope you enjoyed the funny stories from last week. So we are making a big switch from funny to lonely. It's the holiday season and a lot of people feel lonely more than usual. It is magnified because we think that everyone else is having a good time and we are the only ones who are feeling alone. First of all, ask yourself: is that really true? The more I talk to people the more I realize that everyone has their struggles. Even those that seem to be fine on the outside. Below are some ways you might feel during this time of year:
“I feel like I’m not important to anyone.”
“I feel like nobody needs me.”
“I feel like I don’t really exist.”
“I feel alone within myself.”
“It feels safer to be alone – then I can’t get rejected.”
“I feel numb when I feel lonely.”
“I feel like I don’t have any meaningful relationships.”
“I feel like I don’t have anyone to tell my good news to.”
“I feel alone when I’m surrounded by people.”
You can add your own description of how it feels to you. Acknowledging it is always the first step to get help. Always.
Loneliness has many different causes, which vary from person to person. We don't always understand what it is about an experience that usually makes us feel lonely.
For some people, certain life events may mean they feel lonely, such as:
experiencing a loss
going through a relationship break-up
retiring and losing the social contact you had at work
changing jobs and feeling isolated from your co-workers
starting at university
moving to a new area or country without family, friends or community networks
empty nest for moms
A lot of people find they feel lonely at certain times of the year, such as Christmas.
I encourage you to google support groups, Griefshare (I am going to one this week) and other things. Below is a list with ideas copied from a mental health website.
Here are some ways to prevent loneliness:
Consider community service or another activity that you enjoy. These situations present great opportunities to meet people and cultivate new friendships and social interactions.
Expect the best. Lonely people often expect rejection, so instead, try focusing on positive thoughts and attitudes in your social relationships.
Focus on developing quality relationships. Seek people who share similar attitudes, interests, and values with you.
Recognize that loneliness is a sign that something needs to change. Don't expect things to change overnight, but you can start taking steps that will help relieve your feelings of loneliness and build connections that support your well-being.
Understand the effects of loneliness on your life. There are physical and mental repercussions to loneliness. If you recognize some of these symptoms affecting how you feel, make a conscious effort to combat them.
Join a group or start your own. For example, you might try creating a Meetup group where people from your area with similar interests can get together. You might also consider taking a class at a community college, joining a book club, or taking an exercise class.
Strengthen a current relationship. Building new connections is important, but improving your existing relationships can also be a great way to combat loneliness. Try calling a friend or family member you have not spoken to in a while.
Talk to someone you can trust. Reaching out to someone in your life to talk about what you are feeling is important. This can be someone you know such as a family member, but you might also consider talking to your doctor or a therapist. Online therapy can be a great option because it allows you to contact a therapist whenever it is convenient for you.
What are your experiences with loneliness?
We all go through times of feeling lonely. You are not alone.
Take one idea from the above list and do it.
Implementation is huge. Without it you stay exactly where you are and nothing changes. I understand that taking action might be the hardest part for you right now because when you feel lonely you don't have the motivation to do anything.
I encourage you to take something from the list and do it.
Here are some more ideas:
get together with someone to bake cookies
find someone to watch a movie together
ask a local hospital or church if they need volunteers
What are your ideas?
As I said above, this week, I am planning to go to a Griefshare group, as the 1 year anniversary of my brothers death is approaching and I feel it deeply. I also met with a friend to bake cookies. I needed to ask, plan, and research....you’ll need to do that as well. Don't wait for someone to get you out of the funk. They might not even know that you are feeling lonely.
Share your experiences and ideas with me. I love to hear from you.
I am taking care of myself and I am committed to doing one thing to feel better
PS: Message me for a free consult to start moving toward a more confident you.
You are loved. Deeply loved. Loved beyond measure.
Until next time, Isabelle
Call or write for a free life coaching consultation