During the pandemic, I found myself feeling extra lonely. Even though I was surrounded by family and friends, the interactions were not fulfilling. Whether it was hanging out with my friends or dinner with my parents, I still felt lonely. So, I decided to spend some time by myself, but it only made me feel more alone.
I quickly learned that alone and loneliness are two different concepts describing our physical and emotional state. Alone is described as the physical state of not being around another individual, whereas loneliness is the psychological state of social interactions not being met to standards.
Loneliness comes from a lack of satisfaction or connection when interacting with others. A negative energy surrounds you, despite any of your best efforts. You may feel detached from others, making it difficult to interact. However, simply being alone is not loneliness. Many people feel at peace when they are alone, while others crave interactions. But what do you do if you feel lonely despite being surrounded by people?
We all need our moments of solitude for our mental and emotional well-being. “Me time” recharges your brain, sparks creativity and improves relationships. Enjoy these moments of self love. Explore who you truly are.
When you’re feeling lonely, it’s important to pratice self-kindness. Don’t beat yourself up for feeling this way; It’s only human. Give yourself a break and take care of yourself. Put a break on negative thought cycles! Schedule a yoga class, go for a walk, plan a spa day, whatever disrupts these habits.
One thing that helped me through my loneliness was creating a vision board. The vision board allowed me to set my future goals that involved dates with future friends, family, and colleagues. Sometimes it’s hard to stick to a plan, but a vision board can keep you on track.
Another way to improve your mental health is connecting with others who feel the same way. On social media sites such as Facebook, you can connect with others in groups who are struggling with loneliness. It’s a good way to feel connected and talk to others when face-to-face interaction is limited.
Loneliness is just a feeling, and it can be changed, don’forget that! Talk to the barista at Starbucks, write a letter to a friend, and reach out to people with small acts of kindness. You may be lonely, but I promise, you are not alone. Click here for more tips to combat loneliness.
Written by: Chloe West