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How to accept loneliness

This article was co-authored by Chloe Carmichael, PhD. Chloe Carmichael, PhD is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist who runs a private practice in New York City. With over a decade of psychological consulting experience, Dr. Chloe specializes in relationship issues, stress management, self esteem, and career coaching. She has also instructed undergraduate courses at Long Island University and has served as adjunct faculty at the City University of New York. Dr. Chloe completed her PhD in Clinical Psychology at Long Island University in Brooklyn, New York and her clinical training at Lenox Hill Hospital and Kings County Hospital. She is accredited by the American Psychological Association and is the author of “Nervous Energy: Harness the Power of Your Anxiety” and “Dr. Chloe’s 10 Commandments of Dating.”

There are 9 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page.

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People feel lonely for a number of reasons, including simple social awkwardness and intentional isolation. Some people may even feel lonely when they are surrounded by people because they lack meaningful connections with those people. [1] X Research source Everyone experiences loneliness sometimes, but it is never pleasant. Dealing with loneliness can take many forms, including meeting new people, learning to appreciate your alone time, and reconnecting with your family. Keep reading to learn more about how to deal with loneliness.

This article was co-authored by Donna Novak, Psy.D. Dr. Donna Novak is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist based in Simi Valley, California. With over ten years of experience, Dr. Novak specializes in treating anxiety and relationship and sex concerns. She holds a BA in Psychology from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and a doctoral degree (Psy.D) in Clinical Psychology from Alliant International University-Los Angeles. Dr. Novak uses a differentiation model in treatment that focuses on personal growth by increasing self-awareness, personal motivation, and confidence.

There are 8 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page.

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You may be surprised to hear that 40% of the Americans report feeling lonely. [1] X Research source Loneliness can affect our mental, emotional, and physical health by suppressing the immune system, increasing the risk for depression and anxiety, and distorting our perceptions. [2] X Research source You may feel lonely if you live in a small town and can’t find friends your age. Sometimes loneliness is the result of recent life changes: a recent move to a new city, landing a new job, or attending a new school. When in the midst of big changes, realize that you may feel lonely for a moment. Whether loneliness is experienced for a short term or chronically, there are plenty of things you can do to become more at peace and work through feelings of loneliness.

It’s normal to feel lonely. It’s okay to feel the indescribable sadness that accompanies this feeling, too. And as isolated and disconnected as you might feel, the experience of loneliness doesn’t mean you have to be cut off from the world. There are ways to feel less alone.

Everyone experiences loneliness at some time in their life. It could come after a divorce or a break up, or after moving to a new area, or when we have spent too much time on our own, whether that’s due to age, illness, or, as with the COVID-19 pandemic, social restrictions.

Some people can feel lonely even in a crowded room or in a relationship, especially if they recognize within themselves an inability to connect with others on a deeper, more intimate level — which in turn, can fuel negative feelings around self-doubt and self-worth.

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When we feel lonely, a common tendency is to escape the feeling and look for an external distraction. It could be something as simple as taking out your phone in a public place to appear busy. Or maybe you cancel social plans because you’re exhausted, only to stay home and mindlessly scroll online for hours.

Of course, at the other end of the spectrum, people can feel unmotivated and depressed, and the emotional pain can make them retreat, not wanting to engage socially or online. And when we are in a lonely place, this withdrawal exacerbates the sense of isolation, and we feel stuck.

However loneliness expresses itself, just know you’re definitely not alone in experiencing this. In fact, most people don’t know how to deal with being lonely, or how to deal with being alone. As the co-founder of Headspace and former Buddhist monk Andy Puddicombe puts it: “In a world where we are seemingly ever more connected [via our devices], so many people say they feel increasingly disconnected, isolated, or lonely.”

So what’s the antidote to loneliness? How can we accept being lonely and at the same time learn to feel at peace in our own company? Such questions might well sound impossible at first, especially when loneliness seems so hard. With meditation, there is a way.

Feel more connected to the world around you

Find a greater sense of ease with the situation and circumstance you’re in by learning to look inward and investigate feelings of loneliness.

Listen to Reframing Loneliness: Session 1 – 10 minutes

Understanding loneliness

There are so many reasons and circumstances as to why we experience loneliness that the only real common denominator is the feeling itself. And half the battle of how to deal with loneliness is to understand what it means to feel lonely and how that differs from being alone.

The first thing to say is that if you are feeling desperate, pick up the phone and reach out to a family member, a friend, or even a support group — we’ve compiled a list of trusted mental health resources from around the globe.

Letting someone know you are struggling is the first step in acknowledging loneliness and doing something about it.

Beyond that, the more we try to push away feelings of loneliness, the more we can’t begin to understand what’s under the surface of those feelings, and, without that understanding, the void of loneliness might well continue to feel overwhelming.

Of course, sitting with ourselves at such times isn’t easy; it might even feel intolerable. But the key to dealing with loneliness is to find a skillful way to work with it. When we investigate it, examine it, and understand how it begins, the resulting awareness can help us find a greater sense of ease with the emotion itself.

“In some ways, the antidote to loneliness is to be more present,” says Andy. “Not caught up in the story of loneliness, but rather resting in the present moment.”

Try this 5-minute meditation to feel more present

Allow yourself to unwind when no one's around.

Listen to Alone Time – 5 minutes

When we use mindfulness meditation exercises to connect with the present moment, only then can we begin to uncover the origin of the way we feel and discover more about ourselves. As we stay in the present — rather than allowing the mind to fuel the story around loneliness — we begin to discover that we are not alone; we begin to discover the connection we have to the lives of others and to the world as a whole.

Meditation for combating loneliness

Meditation can help lessen the impact of loneliness, and the more we practice, the more we allow ourselves to feel the benefits.

“There's a tremendous sense of shame that people who are lonely feel. I say that as someone who felt ashamed of being lonely as a child and even at points during adulthood,” says former Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy.

“I think part of the reason is that saying you're lonely feels like saying you're not likeable, you're not lovable — that somehow you're socially deficient in some way. The reality is that loneliness is a natural signal that our body gives us, similar to hunger, thirst. And that's how important human connection is.

“Thousands of years ago, our ancestors knew this. They knew there was safety in numbers. And when separated from each other, it places our survival at risk. And it puts us in a physiologic stress state. But when it's prolonged, then it can become a chronic state of stress, which leads to inflammation in our body [that] damages tissues in blood vessels and, ultimately, damages our physical, as well as our emotional, health.”

Meditation can have a significant impact on our physical health as well, but in a positive way: a 2012 study from the University of California — Los Angeles (UCLA) showed that elderly people who took part in an eight-week meditation program targeting mindfulness-based stress reduction not only reported reduced feelings of loneliness, but that meditation positively impacted the genes and protein-markers linked to heart disease.

"Our work presents the first evidence showing that a psychological intervention that decreases loneliness also reduces pro-inflammatory gene expression," said Steve Cole, a UCLA professor of medicine and psychiatry.

When you are feeling overwhelmed by loneliness, it can always be helpful to stop, take a minute, and take a few deep breaths.

Have you ever felt like there was no one you could connect with? Do you know what it’s like to feel isolated? There are times when we all want to be alone for a while. However, when enjoying peaceful “alone time” turns into feelings of loneliness, it can feel quite overwhelming.

How to accept loneliness

Loneliness is defined as “feelings of sadness or depression because one has no friends or acquaintances; the feeling of being isolated.” It causes people to feel empty, alone, and unwanted. People who are lonely often crave human contact, but their state of mind makes it more difficult to form connections with other people.

If you find yourself feeling lonely, it’s important to know that you are not alone and that there are ways to establish relationships and overcome loneliness. By first identifying the reason that you feel lonely, you can address ways to decrease those feelings and establish relationships that give you a sense of fulfillment.

The Truth About Loneliness

Loneliness is often not the result of being alone, but more about the lack of satisfactory relationships. While being alone is defined as lacking the presence of another, a person who is lonely can feel so in a room full of people.

A 2018 survey conducted by Cigna insurance revealed that, although loneliness is a common occurrence, approximately 54% of people deny feeling lonely and 53% do not report feeling left out by others. So, while loneliness may be prevalent in society, the results of this survey suggest that loneliness does not have to be a permanent situation. Further in this article, we will discuss ways to help resolve loneliness and lessen the chances of its reoccurrence.

Overcoming Loneliness

There are several things that can help as you begin to address loneliness and try to prevent its return. For example:

Take a break from social media

We are surrounded by technology and ways to “connect” with people. However, if you find yourself using social media more than you interact with people on a personal level, it may be time for a break. When individuals take a break from social media, they usually become more focused on seeking out more meaningful interactions. When this happens, those relationships seem to help the loneliness subside.

How to accept loneliness

Spend quality time with a friend/loved one

When it comes to loneliness, quality time is often much more important than “quantity time.” By intentionally planning some quality time with a friend or loved one, you are allowing yourself to engage with others. While your time may be limited, if you make the most of it (quality time), you may be surprised at how much better you begin to feel.

Connect socially

If your loneliness stems from a lack of self-esteem or the fear of rejection, making social connections may feel out of your comfort zone. However, socializing with others is a great way to address the feelings of loneliness. This doesn’t have to be difficult or awkward, small efforts of social connection can make a huge difference. For example, instead of sending an instant message to someone you work with, walk down the hall to their office and speak to them personally. Instead of sending an email to a friend, call them. Once you have conquered the small steps, you will find that you become more comfortable with social interaction. There are apps to help make meeting new people easier too.

How to accept loneliness

Pay attention to your feelings

As previously mentioned, it is normal to feel occasional loneliness. However, if your periods of loneliness become more frequent or last longer, it’s time to take a step toward resolving the issues.

Don’t be afraid to seek help

If you feel overwhelmed by loneliness or you don’t know which steps to first take, you may find that seeking the help of a counselor or therapist could be beneficial. A counselor can help you get to the root of your emotions and help you learn to address the loneliness you feel.

With increased awareness regarding mental health and well-being, resources for counseling have also increased. Today, individuals who are interested in seeking the services of a counselor or therapist can choose the traditional route of in-person sessions in a physician or counselor’s office. Some schools have in-house student counselors that offer services. Further still, a growing trend in the field of mental healthcare is online counseling .

How to accept loneliness

While many people could benefit from the help of a counselor, not everyone feels as though they have the time or financial resources necessary to seek help. This is where online counseling may be a great option. Online counseling services, such as those provided by BetterHelp , are aimed at offering licensed, experienced mental health professionals to help navigate through difficult experiences in life. Below are some reviews of BetterHelp counselors, from people experiencing similar issues.

Counselor Reviews

“It’s nice to know that you’re not alone. Amee Chacon helps me realize that and shares some of the experiences I went through, which helps me a lot.”

“Colleen has been an intricate part of my healing and I know that I would not be as successful as I am without her encouragement, support and advice. She is always there when I need her without hesitation and fully understands the goals I have and the challenges I face. She has wonderful techniques in helping me release and cope with stress and anxiety and it has greatly reduced my depression. Colleen is an absolutely fantastic therapist and I can’t recommend her highly enough!”

Conclusion

While loneliness is an emotion that everyone experiences from time to time, it’s important to realize that loneliness does not mean you are alone. There are many measures that can be put in place to help reduce feelings of loneliness. If it becomes a constant problem, or if you feel overwhelmed, it’s okay to reach out for help. Whether you choose to pursue growing your social network, participate in group therapy, or initiate one-on-one counseling with a therapist, there are compassionate people who are ready to support you. Take the first step today.

How to accept loneliness

Because whether or not you believe everyone gets someone, what you’re asking the person to do is wait. And waiting can be one of the loneliest things a person can do.

Loneliness is very rarely a problem that can be dealt with later. Loneliness is urgent. It’s loud and inescapable and ridiculously hard to ignore. It has no care for time and place — it will attack you and force you to feel it, whenever and wherever it feels like.

I was at my loneliest when I lived alone for the first time. I had moved 700 miles away from home in order to pursue my dream career, as you do, and I didn’t know a single soul in my new city.

It was so strange to me. I always imagined I’d grow up with someone by my side, but here I was, having to face adulthood alone.

While I eventually met new people, none of them felt like people I truly connected with. I was beginning to think I would spend most of my years here alone. The room I slept in felt emptier and emptier as the loneliness seeped into me more and more each day.

Still, I held on to the belief that there was someone out there for me. Once I meet him, we’d instantly click, become best friends, and face the perils of growing up side by side. I’d stop feeling so lonely because I’d finally have a person to call my own.

That person never came.

Eventually, it got to the point where the loneliness began to physically hurt me. It physically hurt my chest to sit alone and think about how lonely I was. I couldn’t take it anymore, and so only two years after moving out of home, I moved back in.

I spent every day of those two years feeling lonely, waiting for a person I didn’t even know to come and save me. The truth is, I might’ve been a lot less lonely if I had never waited.

We are usually alone when we feel lonely. The feeling can attack us anywhere, but it usually picks the moments when we are by ourselves to impact us the most. It’s easy to believe that when we feel lonely, all we need is someone else to make the hurt go away.

It’s why the “someone out there” comment is so widely used. When we are lonely, we feel like there’s a part of us that’s missing. Like we’re a jigsaw puzzle that’s unsolved because we’re missing one piece.

And by that thinking, we imply the idea that we aren’t enough to make ourselves complete. We’re required to wait for someone else to come and make us complete.

What happens if that person never comes? What happens if they arrive late because they’re stuck in traffic? Do we just wait? Suffer through the loneliness with the small hope that maybe someone someday is going to come and take it away?

I think Rupi Kupaur said it best in her book, Milk and Honey:

“Loneliness is a sign that you are in desperate need of yourself.”

How to accept loneliness

The truth is, nobody is going to come and make you complete. Most people are too busy trying to be complete themselves. Having someone be your medicine is a lot of pressure to put on a person, and it’s pressure that will ultimately be unfruitful.

A human being will never be the answer to our problems when our problems lie so deeply in our fear of being by ourselves.

“Everyone has a place in the world, and yours shouldn’t be inside someone else.”

— Adrea Cope

That’s not to say there isn’t someone out there for us. Maybe there is. But a good partner, whether it’s a friend or a lover, isn’t supposed to make you feel strong, only stronger. They shouldn’t make you feel complete.

Because what even does it mean to feel complete? Doesn’t being complete mean to grow, to experience, to learn more, and to better yourself?

Or does it just mean to stop feeling lonely?

I don’t think it’s possible to ever stop feeling lonely. Loneliness, like every other feeling, will always be possible. Friendships and romances are wonderful things, but human beings come and go, and when they go, you deserve to feel happy even without them.

And what if there isn’t someone out there for us? What happens then? Do we just go around, living the rest of our lives feeling empty and incomplete?

I don’t want that. I don’t want my self-worth to depend on anyone but myself.

I don’t ever want to be the missing piece in someone else’s life. I don’t want to complete them. And I don’t want them to complete me. I’m working very hard on being complete myself. I want to be my own person before I am ever anyone else’s.

“So plant your own gardens and decorate your own soul, instead of waiting for someone to bring you flowers.”

— Jorge Luis Borges

When we rely on someone else to make us love ourselves, we are putting our happiness in someone else’s hands. And when they walk away, they’ll carry it with them as well.

Start taking responsibility for yourself.

You have a responsibility to yourself now, and that is to complete yourself. Work everyday to make yourself whole. Fill the empty parts in your life with things that speak to your soul, like books or cooking or poetry. If nobody chooses you, choose yourself and show the world how it’s done.

Do things that make you happy.

Even if it means doing them by yourself. Start being comfortable with spending time alone. After all, you are the person you spend the most time with. Might as well be comfortable around that person. There’s so much to do in the world and you yourself are good enough company.

Have your own goals.

Don’t let your goals be to be with another person. People are great, but they are not yours to possess. You need to have your own life, your own dreams, your own accomplishments. When you begin to work yourself to be the best version you can be and give yourself attention, you begin to believe you are worthy of that attention.

Allow yourself to feel lonely.

Entertain it like it’s an old friend that’s only coming around to visit. Understand that you can’t control how you feel, but you can only control how it affects you. Once you learn to accept loneliness as a common part of life, it will start to realize it no longer has the impact on you it used to have.

“When I get lonely these days, I think: So be lonely. Learn your way around loneliness. Make a map of it. Sit with it, for once in your life. Welcome to the human experience. But never again use another person’s body or emotions as a scratching post for your own unfulfilled yearnings.” — Elizabeth Gilbert

Love yourself so much that when that part of you asks, “What if your person never comes?” you can look at it in the eye and say:

“So what if my person never comes? I’m perfectly fine being by myself.”

i've been trying really hard to not invalidate my emotions and process them in a positive way, but loneliness still kicks my butt every other day. listening to roleplay asmr only goes so far as a crutch for loneliness.

if anyone has advice for that, i'd be more than grateful.

· 5m

We hurt so we know that there is something we need to adress. That goes for both physical and mental pain, and lonliness is one of those situations. Interacting and building connections with other people is one of the most basic needs we have to ensure proper emotional and intellectual well-being, and we should absolutely allow ourselves to feel bad when that need isn't fulfilled. While we should work towards being okay in our own company, take time to reflect on what is it that you really need from other people and find it. Do you need a companion to engage in your hobbies together, someone to talk about everything and nothing, someone to build a mutual support system? Fulfill those needs by putting yourself out there and engaging in communities and take time to appreciate bonds that you already have. This can be a long process itself but you will feel much better knowing that you're actively striving for it.

You might like this talk by Thich Nhat Hanh (https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=M2o_hS0zivM&vl=en). Some questions that might be helpful to ask yourself:

What makes the feeling of loneliness yours? Why do you need to call it “my” emotion? The mind has a tendency to identify with loneliness and other emotions, so you’re not doing anything wrong. But can you try welcoming loneliness as a non-self visitor in the mind, then letting it come and go however it wants?

Loneliness is an unpleasant feeling, so it’s natural to dislike it and want to avoid it. But is it necessary to avoid loneliness to find peace and wellbeing? Is there enough room in the mind for loneliness and peace/wellbeing to exist at the same time?

Everyone who has been in severe pain knows how good it feels when the pain goes away. What parts of your body are pain-free right now? For example, is it easy to breathe? Do you not have a headache? Do you not have a stomach ache? Do you not have a back ache? No broken bones? Etc. It might help to do a body scan to look at all of the parts that are pain-free, and see how much joy and relief you can find in them. Even if there is pain somewhere, other parts can be pain-free. This is true for both body and mind.

How to accept loneliness

After a break up, managing and dealing with the separation, along with appending loneliness is bever an easy task, especially for women.

In all of its forms, loneliness can be best described as a complex emotional state in which the sufferer feels uncared for, unattached, rejected or unattended to; over a short or even extended period of time. The psychological and emotional scale of loneliness can be so severe that it often leads to unexpected behavioral changes, suicidal tendencies, paranoia, or even death. But its complexities are even much worse when loneliness occurs as a result of unwanted separation from a loved one through death, divorce, family segregation, or from a needed relationship.

For you to understand the impact of separation on loneliness, you would first have to understand that (unwanted) separation is the distressing removal of a person or place from the ordinary strata of one’s life in as much that the affected person feels that their existence is almost useless without that missing person or place. And if you should put both of these together, then one can better understand the sufferings of a person who have to endure the pains of separation and loneliness.

In almost all cases, professional intervention by a psychiatrist, a counselor, or similarly skilled professional is often required in order to contain the ramifications of this dreaded emotional scourge. But even outside of that, there are still so seemingly simple but effective things that you can do to deal with separation and loneliness depending on what had triggered it in the first space.

So if it occurred from the perspective of a separated partner or a divorce; you can take these five simple tips into account, and you should soon be on your way to a little normalcy again.

1. Accept (no matter what) that it is over, and that you have to move on to another phase in life.

After all, one of the biggest failures of people whose partners have walked away from them, is their inability to accept the separation or accept that the person wants to move on.
Pleading and begging the person to stay would only place them several times above you, and leave you to nothing more than being a weaker emotionally wrecked partner in an already lost relationship.

2. Accept that loneliness is normal.

One of the worst things that you can do after a separation is crying yourself out because you are going to be lonely.
It will be ok to cry, but cry only because you can’t believe you had wasted so much of your time with a jerk that was not really worth your time anyway.

For me, you will do yourself a good if you can accept the fact that loneliness is normal. If you can accept and understand that loneliness can also help you to reflect on yourself and your life in a positive way, then the impact of it will be positively felt.

Open your eyes and see loneliness as your personal time away from the whims, dependency and selfishness of other people.
Do not go running to a club or fun places in a bid to fight off that loneliness. After all, it might be a good thing to be lonely sometimes.

No need to fight it. Because it is a process that takes its own time, no matter how big the crowd that you are standing in.

If you can accept that loneliness can be a good thing too, then you won’t have a problem being without the no-good person that walked away from you.

3. Do not try to force yourself to forget the person.

It will be ok to remember them, but focus on the bad, the drama, the pain, the stress, the misery, and the humiliating aspects of that relationship you had with them.

Even if you can repeatedly think about just one regretted or messy moment of your time with them, I can assure you that you would begin to feel happy that you had let them go, and may even begin to hate the thought of being with them, ever again.

4. Do not call, text or show your emotional side to them.

In most cases, when a guy or a girl dumps you, he or she my indirectly tests their emotional control by waiting for you to call his or her phone first to find out why they did what they did or what went wrong in the relationship. From the moment you calls him or her with that clumsiness or start giving your ex updates about your life, I can tell that he or she would be smiling on the other cheek because it tells them that you are weak and that you can’t do without him or her.

It will also be a good thing if you simply ignore his or her calls, their messages, and their social connections. He or she would soon come running at your door or at your job with a clumsy reason why they had to see you. But let your common sense take control, and let ex know that you already accept that it’s over, and that they are just cramming themselves into your new found space.

And please make your statement very, very short. Thank you. Because having a lengthy meeting with your ex would be nothing more than one of their emotional tricks to bend you back in.

5. No matter what, do not rush into another relationship.

Some people think that if they call and spend time with the other guy or girl that was hanging on at the side of them, they would get some emotional help. Some even rush into romancing the new kid on the block that they give their email or phone number to a few weeks before their break up.

Well ladies and gentlemen, I want to tell you that your new partner knows that you are nothing more than an emotional wrecking ball who would do anything to impress your ex or maybe satisfy your stupid emotions.

In such a case, you would have no one to blame but yourself, and you would soon have to be crying for the separation of two persons from your life. And frankly, I don’t know what advice I can give you to survive two stupendous separations.

So it is always best to wait it out, even if it means for two years, before committing to anyone again.

It would make no sense you go into a new union, when you have not overcome the pains of the other.

Overall, surviving separation and loneliness has more to do with your own self discipline, your self-respect, and your ability to stick to your determination to survive it, no matter what.

How to accept loneliness

The Loneliness Epidemic is a growing problem as people are becoming increasingly lonely in the United States and around the world. While the problem of loneliness is a problem which people face whether they are single, in a relationship, or married there are ways to deal with loneliness. These are twelve tips to help those who are dealing with loneliness on how to beat loneliness and the Loneliness Epidemic.

How to accept loneliness

How Singles Can Beat Loneliness

Accept Loneliness

The first step with anything is to accept it. Accept that loneliness is real. It is also important to know that loneliness and social isolation increases your risk of an early death according to studies by 50%.

Recognize Loneliness

Learn to recognize the different characteristics which are associated with loneliness. You are able to feel loneliness. Loneliness will ruin your sleep and sleep cycle. Loneliness can also lead you down a path of bad and self-destructive habits. It can also affect your mental health.

Nurture Relationships

Relationships can be difficult since your friends work and may have a different schedule, but work to schedule a time to meet with a friend. You can do this by reaching out to your friends to schedule a time to meet for coffee, lunch, drinks, or to do something that you both enjoy doing together. You can also start conversations with and connect with your neighbors where you live. You can also find like-minded people who share the same interests as you by looking for community by joining a group or club.

Practice Positive Self-Talk and Self-Love

Talking and thinking negatively about yourself will only increase loneliness and not help you feel better as a person. Learn to love yourself and to accept who you are as a person.

Find a Hobby

Find something that you enjoy doing and focus on doing that when you are feeling lonely. There are a number of different things that you can do as a hobby. If you don’t have one and don’t know where to start, begin here.

Focus on Others

Focus outwardly on the needs of others rather than on yourself. This will help to refocus you towards other people and to be better tuned to what people are saying through their body language, conversation, and their aspirations.

Find community

If you do not have a community, then you should find one because it is an important way to beat loneliness.

Be Persistent

Be persistent in working to get together with friends, community, volunteering, and getting outside to interact with other people. Make this a goal to work towards to help to defeat the feelings of loneliness.

Always Show Up

Always show up to events that you plan to attend that are of interest to you. Do not miss an event because you do not feel well because that feeling is what you are working to get past. Show up to meet new people and to interact with others.

Volunteer

A great way to work to get over loneliness is to give time back to your community by volunteering. Find an organization that you support and volunteer to help the organization to achieve its goals while helping your community.

Kindness

Practice kindness to others. This will take the inward focus on yourself and direct it outwards towards other people. This will help to make you feel less lonely because you are not solely focused on yourself but on others.

See Professional Help

If your loneliness is especially bad and you suffer from other mental heal issues such as depression, then seek professional help. A professional counselor or therapist can better help you to work towards overcoming isolation, loneliness, and depression. It will take work but it will help you in the long run.

The Loneliness Epidemic is a problem despite being an age of constant connection with social media. If you are suffering from loneliness, whether you are single or in a relationship, practice these twelve tips and consider a counselor or therapist if it is bad enough that it affects your daily life. Loneliness is, unfortunately, common today so do not be ashamed if you suffer from loneliness because you are not the only one today.

No matter how many people are around you or in your life, depression can still bring loneliness. Try these tips to reconnect and break free of the isolation of depression.

How to accept loneliness

Everyone feels lonely from time to time, but for some, loneliness comes far too often. Feeling lonely can plague many people — including the elderly, people who are isolated, and those with depression — with symptoms such as sadness, isolation, and withdrawal. Loneliness can strike a person who lives alone or someone who lives in a house filled with people. “Loneliness is subjective,” says Louise Hawkley, PhD, a research associate in the psychology department at the University of Chicago. “You can’t argue with someone who says they’re lonely.”

Although depression doesn’t always lead to loneliness, feeling lonely is often a predictor of depression one year or even two years later, and it certainly leads to sadness, Dr. Hawkley says. Freeing yourself of feelings like being isolated by depression is part of the healing process.

How to Fight Depression and Loneliness

Feelings of loneliness don’t have to be constant to call for action, but you will need to give yourself a push to get back into the thick of life and re-engage with others to start feeling better. These strategies for fighting depression and loneliness can help: