Dealing with the way you feel – coping with loneliness
Emotions, feelings, are temporary. Feeling lonely is temporary. Even if feeling lonely is the most dominant feeling during the day, you usually feel other feelings too, depending on what activities you are doing during the day and how much of your attention and concentration is focused on something else. It is possible to not feel lonely, no matter how lonely you feel right now.
How to cope with loneliness and also other unpleasant emotions?
The best way to approach emotions is to strive for finding out the root causes, the root beliefs (what we believe to be true) behind them. Ask yourself and answer:
- What would I have to believe is true in order to feel this way, in order to feel lonely? Ask it several times and always also ask: Why do I believe in this?
- Then ask yourself: What would I have to believe is true in order to not feel lonely anymore?
Doing something positive (improves the way you think and feel) only once or rarely vs. doing things and behaving in ways that are not beneficial more often or most of the time. The questions to ask yourself regarding your daily activities are:
- What makes me feel good (write down the list of activities) and what makes me feel bad (today, this week, this month)?
- Can I do more of the positive things and less of the not beneficial things by conscious decision and choice? If I keep doing more things in ways that makes me feel some types of negative emotions, then I will keep living a life, where I feel more negative emotions than positive emotions. That’s why I can make an inventory to gain full clarity about this and do some changes in my life to start doing more things, which make me feel good, pleasant emotions. It is not about having many things or more things then you have now that make you feel good, but it is about how often you do any of them.
To stop feeling lonely, to overcome loneliness, you may have to look at the following components:
- Deciding what changes to make and following through.
- Changing how you think about yourself. Changing self-limiting beliefs. Self-hypnosis may help with this too.
- Spending more time at places, where it is easy and natural to meet other people.
- Learning some new useful skills.
- Instead of a “negativity generating style of living”, doing activities, which promote a “positivity generating style of living”. How? For example by thinking, saying, doing what love would think, say, do.
Coping with loneliness
A common way of dealing with feelings is using some instant gratifications, manipulating our feelings through purchase, through buying products, services. This doesn’t mean that this is the best way or recommended way. It is simply a common way, which works for some to provide fast temporary results – changing focus and attention on something else.
Other ways of changing how you feel, to not feel lonely and to elevate your mood, are:
- Changing what activities you do and with whom and how often
- Having a clear vision of a meaningful life and living according to that and reminding yourself of it and knowing which activities affirm that you are living according to it. Finding purpose beyond your own satisfaction, through noble pursue of service to others.
- Calling friends and talking via the phone
- Calling free helplines and talking with others you don’t know, but are there to listen and give advice
- Doing sport like running, hiking and other, effects the way you feel. For the feeling of loneliness, the best is doing sport together with others (table tennis, badminton, Frisbee …). If you are doing it alone, you can greet others you meet while doing the sport/activity. You may check out some local meetups to do activities with other people who use the same service/website to find other people they never met before, but have at least some same interests and a positive attitude towards meeting new people.
- Spending time with pets, playing with them
- Listening to uplifting music and dancing (a type of exercise/sport/physical movement) like nobody is watching
- Falling asleep and when having a good sleep not feeling any negative emotions, recommendations for a better sleep and why it matters
- Creating and deepening the connection with yourself, your true self, through regular quality meditation
- Exploring various other communities whether you can develop a sense of connection and belonging and develop various new relationship who you can relate to
- Many times people suffer thanks to their “memory+imagination”. They remember something bad from the past or project something negative into the future. If you can suffer by using your mind, it is also possible to stop or reduce suffering by becoming good at consciously choosing to focus your imagination on positive memories and anticipating good things for the future. Both ways (focusing on something positive or negative in terms of how it makes you feel emotionally) of using “memory+imagination”, both choices will always exist. The question is “Which one do you decide to choose more often?” It would make a lot of sense to choose that, which feels good, that which feels best, as often as you wish, decide, remind yourself. It is within your reach to stop suffering from memory and from imagination, if you cultivate mastering your mind, the thoughts, being conscious about not identifying with negative thoughts and consciously creating positive thoughts. It can be a blessing, a powerful tool if used in positive ways “What’s the most self-loving thought to imagine and think next?”
- Do some positive subconscious mind re-programming for beliefs. One way is by using self-hypnosis audio.
Meeting other people
If you don’t want to be alone, then you have to go to places where there are people and where there is easy and natural to talk to others and become friends, where it is natural and more probable that others will talk to you first.
A few common places to meet other people:
- Using an online website such as: https://www.meetup.com/. Meetup is a service used to organize online groups that host in-person events for people with similar interests.
- Volunteering nearby
- Festivals nearby
- Going to a course or seminar and talking to people there
- In the UK: Social Prescribing Jobs or Activities
- Some people may try out and use some free Apps on their smartphones for “Activities with people nearby”, “Meet new people nearby”, “Social activities”
- If you are interested in new experience and travelling, you can find great communities, activities, and new people to visit and live with at https://www.workaway.info/
Ways, approaches, how NOT to deal with loneliness
Wrong solutions with side effects:
- Waiting, being passive, focusing on what you don’t like without taking any action
- Social media (somehow unreal, addictive, numbing)
- Alcohol, drinking alcohol due to feeling lonely
Useful skills to learn
Your current personality may not be the most outgoing or confident yet, but this can change. You can learn it from others, teachers, experts, you can practice and improve in suitable role-play situations. Learn from somebody who is good at it, and is good at teaching it to others.
It comes down to the following types of skills:
- Various types of communication skills
- For some it may help with self-confidence and loosening up and becoming more comfortable with making the first step in approaching others: learning and practicing some acting skills
If you are feeling depressed, I highly recommend to read the free ebook Quest for a Depression-free Life, a Practical Guidebook. It is full with a lot of advice, recommendations and motivation.
If you are interested in a holistic health approach (ideally read the book first), you may find a few more suggestions (even more in the book) on the recommended products and services page.