Lonely ? Banish Loneliness With These 6 Things

Banish Loneliness
At one time or another, each one of us has felt lonely. It's a natural part of living.

Loneliness can be keenly felt when a person is separated from a loved one by distance, divorce, or death. For other people, it comes to the surface when feeling distant emotionally from a spouse or partner.
Loneliness can also be caused by feelings of isolation, lack of connectedness to others, general social awkwardness, job loss, or rejection in relationships.

How can we learn to cope with loneliness, regardless of its underlying cause? Here are 6 things you can do:

1. Differentiate Between Solitude and Loneliness____
There is a difference between being alone and being lonely, of course. Many people who are currently married or in a relationship report feelings of 'loneliness' even when seated next to their loved one.

Relationships don't always equate to lack of loneliness. And being alone doesn't have to mean that we're lonely. In reality, many of the happiest, most emotionally balanced people spend quite a while alone, reading, reflecting, meditating and exercising.

We need to clarify whether we are just alone, or feeling lonely. Once we identify the cause of our feelings, we can proactively work to resolve them. If we are experiencing real difficulty, then it might be wise to work with an experienced counselor or therapist.

2. Focus on Happiness___
Your level of happiness rests in your hands. If you feel unhappy, take proactive action to correct this state of being. Focus on participation in positive, enjoyable activities. Spend time with your friends and family.

Expand your circle of friends by joining and participating in new social groups. Take a night class. Join a local church, faith community, or community center. Spend extra time participating in the hobbies or activities you really like. Listen to your favorite music; familiar sounds can immediately impact our mood and emotional state.

Focus on those things that make you happy, not on the things, people and places that don't. Always remember that it is you who really controls your level of personal happiness.

3. Develop an Attitude of Gratitude___
Are you thankful for the things you have and the people in your life? Pause and spend a few moments each day focusing on gratitude. What are you thankful for today? Jot down at least one thing each day in a notebook or journal. By focusing on what you are grateful for, you will focus less on the things in your life that you are least happy about.

4. Seek Like-Minded Others____
Join a gym or exercise class. Exercise not only increases our physical health, but our mental and emotional health, too. Endorphins released during physical activity have been proven to improve our mood and overall state of mind.

Seek out and join groups of people who are like-minded. Within almost any city, you will find organized groups of individuals who meet to share interests, hobbies and activities. Whether you enjoy comics or books, video games, arts and crafts, collectibles or sports, you can find others to connect with in your geographic area, who share those same interests.

If you live in a more rural location, go online and join a discussion group of people with similar interests to you. You can also connect with like-minded individuals by joining a faith community and participating in your local church, synagogue, mosque, temple, religious or humanist organization.

5. Serve Others______
This is one of the very best ways to banish loneliness. Give of yourself by volunteering with organizations and causes that matter to you. Helping and supporting others leads to feelings of usefulness and connectedness.You might even find yourself developing lifelong relationships through your participation in your chosen group, organization or cause..

6. Pets or Plants____
Pets and plants bring real enjoyment into the lives of their owners. If the outdoors appeals to you and you enjoy getting your hands dirty, then cultivate a vegetable or fruit garden, or take care of difficult plants (i.e. orchids).

Focus on learning about and nurturing something other than yourself, and enjoy the fruits of your labour by watching them grow and thrive. Connect with those people who also share your inerests.

If you have the facilities and feel equipped to care for an animal, consider adopting a cat or a dog or other pet. Pets can bring a great sense of satisfaction into a person's life, providing a wonderful companionship, too.

Whether your feelings of loneliness are new or longstanding, you have the power to do something about them. With just a little courage and focus, you can take back control of your life and greatly reduce your feelings of loneliness.

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