What is loneliness?
Loneliness is the feeling of being alone or isolated. It’s a natural human emotion that most people experience at some point in their lives.
Why do people feel lonely?
There are many reasons why people may feel lonely, including:
- Lack of social connections
- Moving to a new place
- Going through a breakup or divorce
- Losing a loved one
- Not having people to talk to or spend time with
Health effects of loneliness
Feeling lonely on a regular basis can negatively impact both mental and physical health. Research shows that loneliness is linked to issues like:
- Depression and anxiety
- Sleep issues
- High blood pressure
- Weakened immune system
- Cognitive decline
How to cope with loneliness
If you find yourself feeling isolated or alone, here are some tips that may help:
- Reach out to friends and family to connect
- Join a club, class, or community group to meet new people
- Volunteer in your community
- Adopt a pet for companionship
- Try inviting people to hang out instead of waiting to be invited
- Focus on activities you enjoy to lift your mood
- Consider speaking to a counselor if loneliness persists
It takes effort and courage, but loneliness can be overcome. Focusing on building meaningful connections, finding purposeful activities, and speaking to a professional if needed, can all help to reduce feelings of isolation over time.
Why do I feel lonely even when I’m around people?
Even when surrounded by people, you can still feel lonely if you don’t have meaningful connections. Focus on shared interests and deeper conversations to reduce this feeling over time.
How long will these lonely feelings last?
It varies, but putting effort into meeting people, trying new activities, and speaking to a counselor can help overcome loneliness in weeks/months.
What should I do if my loneliness causes depression?
Seek professional support. Speaking to a doctor or mental health expert can help address the depression while also reducing the loneliness behind it.
Can loneliness go away on its own?
Rarely. Taking proactive steps to foster social connections, find purposeful activities, and get professional support generally leads to the greatest reductions in loneliness.
Who can I talk to if I’m lonely?
Start by opening up to close friends and family. A counselor is also a great option for having someone compassionate to speak openly with, and help you take steps to overcome loneliness.