Loneliness is different for most people – each person has heard various definitions of what it is. But being alone does not always cause loneliness as there are many who prefer just being by themselves. Others have this type of loneliness due to being raised as an only child or outliving all the members of their family.

how to deal with loneliness

Other loneliness

Another type of loneliness feels like the bottom of a deep, dark well where every thought is dark, every feeling is negative and there seems to be no way to get out.

Extremes

So we have two extremes – one that at times is preferred by some and others where dark thoughts are bred leading to health problems.

Best/Worst

Just being by oneself and living with that is often when some people are at their best. The other end of the loneliness scale is that dark abyss where every problem is dark and negative thoughts breed. This type of loneliness can easily turn into depression and needs to be cared for quickly.

Questions

No matter what type of loneliness one is experiencing it is best first to decide whether this is a problem. Ask yourself these questions:

  • Do I understand what is occurring

  • Have I felt this way before

  • Is there anything new in how I am feeling?

  • What can I do to help myself?

History of only children

Usually those adults raised as an only child are the ones who have learned good coping skills over the years of playing alone or being alone. These are people who usually have a pet living with them and will:

  • Brighten up the room they are in

  • Call a friend to chat with

  • Read a good book

  • Go for a walk in the neighborhood

  • Volunteer in the community

  • Linger after church for the pot-lunch that is held monthly

These are all coping skills an only child will have developed to be a well-adjusted adult. They know what:

  • They are feeling;

  • Whether to be concerned;

  • Ways to change the situation.

Other types of loneliness

There are individuals who just can’t handle loneliness – they don’t have any skills to deal with any dark thoughts or they fear loneliness and no matter how they try, they can’t get out of that well of loneliness. This type of loneliness is often seen in:

  • Widows or widowers

  • Divorcees

  • Loss of a child

  • Empty nest syndrome when last child moves out

  • Medical problems

Symptoms of problems

They never think of solutions as the well-adjusted adult doesbecause their ability to think goes to one negative thought after another. They can often be:

  • Scared of the dark

  • Have few if any friends

  • No pets

  • Probably no family except for the kids that have left home

What to do

If you are dealing with loneliness and depression at the same time and you have never felt this way before – you need to go to your primary care physician. These feelings of loneliness are often a combination of emotional and mental sensations that you might never have felt before. Yes – there are numerous medications that can help but if the root of the problem is not dealt with you could have ups and downs in your mental health for many years to come.

Trigger a memory

Often that feeling of loneliness has triggered a memory or feeling, not because you are in fact lonely but you have had some event in your life that caused those same feelings. Your brain is on guard to any danger – that sensation pops up and you get that same scary feeling and have no idea why.

Some loneliness is good

Actually some amount of loneliness is good for a person as it is the best way to learn to love yourself. If you are not happy or don’t love yourself how do you expect anyone to love you?

Self-love

Most individuals often speak about “self-love”. What is self-love – actually it is somewhat different for everyone but it means:

  • Love yourself

  • Figure yourself out

  • Have compassion for youself

To learn about self-love, you need to learn about yourself and work on loving yourself. Along the way, you might learn some truths that not everyone seems to learn but you have to be alone to learn these:

  • Stop comparing yourself to others at work or in your personal life;

  • Percent of body fat has nothing to do with what type of human you are;

  • Exercise is good for your soul not solely for your outward experience. You are not perfect but no one is;

  • Find something you excel at – if you love computers get a new one;

  • Spend time with those you really care about – cherish your friends as some will last a lifetime;

  • Read a book, then have a real adventure when seeing that book as a movie – this will really sharpen your mind;

  • Spend time outside but not because your family is telling you to get out more;

  • Take pictures – today’s digital cameras are amazing just don’t forget to print them out;

  • Let go of the past and forgive those who hurt you – only then can you move on. Anger inside only poisons you;

  • Call your family more often;

  • Resolve any issues you could have with someone in your family; if your daughter and you had a fight over politics for 8 years – fix it;

  • Treat yourself to something you want but don’t need – so what if a ticket to see Adela is $200 – get the best seat you can;

  • Care about your appearance – not in a vain way but just to feel good;

  • Binge out on a Netflix series you want to see;

  • Exercise to release endorphins as they make you feel great;

  • Have a hobby – even one or two;

  • And most of all – spend some time alone – to grow and figure yourself out.

Loneliness is not a bad thing – really, it isn’t. As spending some time alone can make you into a more balanced person. But if any doubt – visit your doctor.