Ways to Avoid and Combat Loneliness
Loneliness and isolation is one of the leading causes of depression, and while we tend to associate these aspects with older people who are isolated, it’s becoming more and more of for younger people.
In part, this is due to how society has shifted to a more digital and remote culture. Today, there are many people working from home who are essentially by themselves all day, opposed to the past when they would have been in an office with colleagues.
Similarly, face-to-face catch ups with friends have been replaced with FaceTime or social media notifications. We seem to be living in a world where the value of in-person interaction has taken a back seat over speed and efficiency. Again, this has many benefits but it’s also creating a world where more and more people feel isolated and cut off.
If you can relate to this at all, it’s time to be more proactive. Try the techniques below to to avoid loneliness and isolation:
Schedule Time with Friends and Family
It’s important to ensure you schedule specific time with friends and loved ones to do something fun, have a drink, and maybe even travel together. Make plans to do activities you enjoy. If you’re looking for an adventure, maybe to spend some time on the water in the summer, for example, take advantage of the services offered from companies such as Carefree Boat Club. Try something new and unexpected. Have fun!
The trick is to actually schedule time for these activities. We all have such busy lives, and our social engagements are often pushed to the back of our minds due to the pressure of work or family life. Friendship is like a fire, in that, if you just leave it without adding fuel and nurturing it–it will go out. It’s important to be proactive to ensure you spend time with with your friends and loved ones.
If you’re feeling isolated, it’s imperative you get out of the house, yet it’s not just being out of the house that we crave–it’s connection. When it comes to making connections, there’s no better way than to meet like-minded people with similar interests than through your hobbies. Whether that’s a sports hobby such as martial arts or something more team focused such as hockey, or a more artistic endeavour such as acting, painting, or writing.
Schedule time to go to a game or watch it at a friend’s house. Join a book club, find a local class and further develop your favorite hobby, or perhaps learn something brand new.
Talk to Others
One of the best ways to tackle loneliness is to talk about the feelings you have with either a close and trusted friend, or a therapist. Loneliness is a very real problem that can lead to–or worsen–low mood and depression. It might be out of your comfort zone to talk about your feelings, as it can feel like a non-issue, but the impact loneliness has on your life can be significant.
In a similar vein, try to open up about your feelings to those in your life, and explain how you feel. They can’t respond and help unless they’re aware of the struggle.
The point here is this: isolation and loneliness can lead to poor mental health and affect nearly all aspects of your life. Use the tips above to avoid the pitfalls of loneliness.
Share your thoughts: are you struggling with loneliness? Have some other tips and tricks to avoid it?