Loneliness can be a very uncomfortable feeling, which is why many of us spend countless energy trying to evade it. Here’s a few tips to deal with the discomfort of feeling lonely:
1. Notice when you are endlessly scrolling on the apps / binging Netflix / (insert other numbing behaviors here) and check in with yourself.
2. Take a few deep breaths and scan your body. What do you notice? Where does loneliness live in your body? Acknowledge it, don’t avoid it and perhaps even befriend it. Our feelings are just data points that tell us info about ourselves. When we stop resisting our feelings and learn to acknowledge what they are telling us we become more self - aware.
3. After leaning into loneliness try and channel your energy into something more aligned to your values. Maybe instead of zoning out you’d benefit from strengthening your social network? You can turn off Netflix and check out some Chicago meet up groups. Maybe run through your friends you have not checked in with in awhile and set up a facetime call. Make an effort to stay in touch with friends from important times in life. Establishing routine check ins with friends definitely allows us to feel more connected and fulfilled.
4. Learn to share parts of yourself with friends and loved ones. Vulnerability takes work however it can be as simple as sharing how you’ve been or what has been challenging you lately. Maybe it has to do with what you are passionate about and spending time and energy on. Learning to ask others intentional questions can also establish a stronger bond and connection.
5. Learn to view time with yourself as a relationship that you want to invest in. Take time to enjoy activities that bring joy and positive vibes. Reframing loneliness as solitude can be a helpful way to enjoy alone time. Solitude is more about restoring yourself and doing things that reinvigorate your spirit.