4 Strategies for Lonely Feelings
Amber Rakoczy, LCSW
A recent survey revealed that most Americans are lonely. The study found that many American adults reported feeling no one knew them well, feeling alone or left out, and lacking meaningful companionship. As humans, we are social beings--safe, secure social environments are vital to our survival. In the absence of satisfying relationships, we feel lonely. Left untreated, chronic loneliness can have serious consequences for our mental and physical health; and lead to various health issues including depression, anxiety, diabetes, and Alzheimer's.
Certainly, we will all experience moments of loneliness. But, it’s the repeated incidents that should alarm us. If you’re feeling lonely, you’re not alone! Consider trying the following this week:
And if you have a friend or family member that you think might be feeling lonely--reach out! Extend an invitation to go shopping, play cards, go for a walk, or come by for coffee. We’re all busy, but it’s the connection to others that typically helps us get from one day to the next; and chances are that the friend who works too much, the brother who had a recent break-up, and your neighbor who sits alone outside might appreciate the invite and and an opportunity to connect.
For those experiencing more chronic feelings of loneliness, seek support through a local therapist, like us here at Lakeview. A few sessions with a counselor can help you explore your feelings of and offer guidance as you navigate steps towards improved social support.