5 top tips for dealing with loneliness
Hello lovelies, so today’s post is my 5 top tips for dealing with loneliness, simply because we all experience loneliness at one point or another, some of us more than others. I have a lot of friends living in London who are from all different countries around the world, and the one thing they all talk about is dealing with some kind of loneliness. Being far from loved ones, in a big city can bring up some feelings of loneliness, this cold weather doesn’t actually help much either. So here are some tips that have helped pull me out from that dreaded dark cloud.
1. Get out and connect with nature
I know its cold and grey out, sometimes raining too so you’re probably thinking..forget that! Seriously though, there is nothing more therapeutic than taking a walk, breathing in the fresh air and just letting your thoughts float away with the wind. Scientists have actually proven that walking and connecting with nature can relieve all kinds of things like anxiety, stress and depression.I personally find that it helps stop me from being in my head too much and reminds me of how connected everything is. So what are you waiting for? Get out there and get your walk on!
2. Reach out to friends and family.
We have been conditioned to be ‘strong’ individuals and that showing vulnerability is a sign of weakness. I gotta tell you, that is a load of bullshit (excuse my language) and actually something that really grinds my gears. Half the time we suffer in silence whilst putting on this mask to the world and pretending that everything is ok, when deep down our souls are crying out for help.
I struggled a lot this year with chronic health problems, anxiety and depression that I personally don’t think I would’ve coped without my friends. This made me feel so lonely and isolated at times but quickly realised that was only because my friends and family had no idea how I was feeling. Once I reached out, they were quick to come over or check on me which made a huge difference.
Call a friend, talk to someone, don’t keep everything bottled up because that will only make things worse. My biggest life lesson so far, has been learning that its ok not to be ok, and asking for help is not a weakness.
3. Volunteer your time to a worthwhile cause.
Let me paint a picture for you….7 years ago, I was fresh out of a long term relationship, facing life as a single mother and really sinking swiftly into depression. It was christmas time, so automatically it made everything 10x worse as I was now suddenly single and looking at facing my first xmas with a whole lot of heartbreak, regret and stacks of loneliness.
I was dealing with feelings of shame, failure at the end of that relationship so I really wasn’t about to reach out to any of my friends/family to talk about what I was going through. In my mind, they were not going to understand and I couldn’t face all the questions and judgement. So after many hours wasting time online I stumbled upon the Crisis homeless charity website. I found myself volunteering for their crisis at christmas program that helps get homeless people off the streets and tries to at least make their xmas a safe one, with food, shelter and help for moving forwards. This was all new to me but I volunteered that year and it was THE best thing I ever did.
Doing something to help other people who have so much less than we do, getting out of my own head was very humbling to say the least. It dawned once quickly how truly blessed I was despite the temporary setbacks and heartbreak. There was so much love and connection in that centre, I really got to appreciate those little things that we all take for granted. I also met some AMAZING people both volunteers and visitors who I now proudly call friends, and I’ve been going back every year ever since.
There are so many opportunities to volunteer, wether its just for a couple of hours, a day, or long term. Get online, I like the DO-IT website that connect you with volunteering opportunities in your area. Do something to help others and you will be inadvertently helping yourself as well in the process.
4. Get Social!
Do yourself a favour and get out of the house. Take up a new hobby, go and meet some likeminded people who share the same interests as you. I recently joined a really cool Meetup group that organises hiking day trips out of London, and I totally love it. I actually love that website as well because you can actually type in your interests and find other people who are into the same stuff as you.
You can find your tribe on there and expand your social circle, which always helps;-). These days there’s a lot of opportunities to do exactly that, for example if you’re into fitness or are a runner, did you know that Nike regularly does some free fitness classes or run clubs, that you just sign up for and simply turn up to? I think you get my drift, all thats left for you to do is to be willing to venture out of your comfort zone a little bit. Its a little scary at first, but I can tell you right now that it is so worth it.
5. Dance like nobody is watching!!!!
Last but not least, this one is my personal favourite. Put on some music, turn it up really loud and dance like nobody is watching. This may sound super silly, but I promise you it works, don’t believe me? There’s actual studies that prove that there are numerous benefits to dancing. It’ll make you feel happy an produce endorphins that obviously contribute to that happiness.
This is an absolute favourite one of mine. I usually recruit my little one to join me, we have a total blast every time. Try it and let me know what you think, there’s nothing like it.
This may sound a bit to ‘woo woo’ for some of you but its definitely worth exploring. Developing some kind of meditation practice helps us to stay grounded and release some negative thought patterns. It can literally be 5 minutes a day, but if you are consistent you will feel a difference. Meditation (when I manage to do it consistently) has really helped feel more connected and in charge of my thoughts. To me, practising meditation is an act of self love. Its a gift I am willing to give to myself for peace of mind. It might help you too.
There you have it beautiful people my personal 5 top tips for dealing with loneliness. Of cos with a bonus thrown in for good measure. I really want to know what YOU do when you’re feeling lonely, sad and anxious. Pop me a comment below, I can’t wait to read it.
As always, don’t forget to live on YOUR terms and love the life you’re living!