Loneliness. A feeling so many try to avoid. A feeling so many try to hide from. We continue to make ourselves busy. We continue to fill our agendas to avoid the down time and allow ourselves to process this emotion. This feeling.
It is not a nice feeling to have. Being lonely can have a ripple effect. It can cause chaos above. Make you question your own self-worth. Make you question your motives. Make you start to resent alone time (which is so important if we want to continue to better ourselves). Loneliness is not an emotion many welcome. So what do we do when we can’t change the way we are feeling? When we physically cannot see someone we love right now? How can you remove the dark cloud above and allow the sun to shine through?
I have found in this current climate, the loneliness has crept in. I continued to surround myself around others, continued to absorb myself in my work, continued to occupy my brain so loneliness could not seep in. But now the chaos has dissolved and I am left with this sinking feeling within and a dark cloud above. How do I get myself out of this? It took weeks before I could no longer sit with this feeling and forced myself to address it. Here’s what I found has helped the clouds drift away and the loneliness fade and not be as strong as it once was.
Lists. I have found this is so therapeutic for me. I continued to do various activities that brought a smile to my face and introduced some light back in. I started focusing on what I have around me and what made me well, me! As I wrote these lists out, it made me appreciate the person I was and what I liked doing which helped me shape my days; I made a note of these things and made sure I did some throughout the week.
- Write a list of all the things you like
- Write a list of the things you love about yourself
- Write a list of the hobbies you love to do
- Journaling. All who know me know I love to journal. I find that when I write how I am feeling on paper it releases it from above and allows me to process my emotions. Instead of bottling them up I allow myself to release them which honestly removes the heavy weight associated with them. If you want to go the next step, I have found I write what I can do to change these feelings into a positive. Eg. If you are feeling lonely you might write a solution such as to ring a friend who has infectious positive energy.
- Lean into your network. Acknowledge those you have around you. Who is in your network? Who do you call on when times are tough? Who is a constant support in your life? By writing their names down and acknowledging the impact they have on your life, I guarantee it will bring a smile to your face. It may bring up some sadness because you cannot see them, but it will also bring out the gratitude and love you have for them.
- Phone a friend. Yes, it may not be the same as a physical visit, but at least you can hear their voice or see them on the screen. You can connect virtually which can help you feel connected in a time where connection is missing.
- Sit with it. I find that sitting with my loneliness actually helps. Now I am not talking about sitting with it for weeks and weeks and feeling down. It’s about acknowledging your emotions, allowing yourself to process them and then taking the steps to change this. E.g. Phone a friend, do something that makes you smile, take up the hobbie you’ve been wanting to take up for years, dancing…anything that brings joy back into your life.
- Know you are not alone. As long as you have yourself, you are never truly alone. You are your own best friend. The most important relationship to have. Connect within. Mediate. Do some yoga. Paint. Get creative. Express yourself how you need to express yourself and know you have you. Your inner child is there. They are there right with you.
Loneliness is not a nice feeling. But know it is ok to feel it. Acknowledge the emotion. Allow yourself to process it. But then take some steps to connect within. To connect out. To help you get by during these tough unprecedented times. You are not alone.
With love and blessings