How To Cope With Loneliness

Updated January 12, 2023by BetterHelp Editorial Team

Have you ever felt like there was no one you could connect with? Do you know what it's like to feel isolated? Of course, there are times when we may want to be alone for a while. However, when enjoying peaceful "alone time" turns into feelings of loneliness, it can become overwhelming.

Are You Feeling Anxiety Or Loneliness?

Loneliness can cause people to feel empty, alone, or unwanted. People who are lonely might crave human contact, but they might still find it challenging to connect with others.

If you are feeling lonely, know that you are not alone with those feelings and that there are ways to establish relationships and overcome loneliness. By identifying why you feel lonely, you can address ways to decrease those feelings and establish relationships that give you a sense of fulfillment.

The Truth About Loneliness

Loneliness is often not the result of being alone but rather the lack of satisfactory relationships. While being alone is defined as lacking the presence of another, a person who is lonely can feel alone even in a room full of people.

A 2018 survey conducted by Cigna insurance revealed that, although loneliness is common, approximately 54% of people deny feeling lonely, and 53% do not report feeling left out by others. So, while loneliness may be prevalent in society, the results of this survey suggest that loneliness does not have to be a permanent situation. Further in this article, we will discuss ways to help resolve loneliness and lessen the chances of its reoccurrence.

Overcoming Loneliness

Several things can help as you address loneliness and potentially prevent its return. For example:

Take A Break From Social Media

We are surrounded by technology and ways to "connect" with people. However, if you find yourself using social media more than interacting with people on a personal level, it may be time for a break. When individuals take a break from social media, they usually become more focused on seeking out more meaningful interactions. When this happens, those relationships can help the loneliness subside.

Spend Quality Time With A Friend/Loved One

When it comes to loneliness, quality time is often much more important than "quantity time." By intentionally planning quality time with a friend or loved one, you are allowing yourself to engage with others. While your time may be limited, if you make the most of it (quality time), you may be surprised at how much better you begin to feel.

Connect Socially

If your loneliness stems from a lack of self-esteem or the fear of rejection, making social connections may feel out of your comfort zone. However, socializing with others can be a great way to address feelings of loneliness. This doesn't have to be complicated or awkward; small efforts of social connection can make a huge difference. For example, instead of sending an instant message to someone you work with, walk down the hall to their office and speak to them personally. Instead of sending an email to a friend, call them. Once you have conquered the small steps, you may become more comfortable with social interaction. There are apps to help make meeting new people easier too.

Pay Attention To Your Feelings

As previously mentioned, it is normal to feel occasional loneliness. However, if your periods of loneliness become more frequent or last longer, it may be time to take a step toward resolving the issues.

Don't Be Afraid To Seek Help

If you feel overwhelmed by loneliness or don't know which steps to take, you may find that seeking the help of a counselor or therapist could be beneficial. A counselor can help you get to the root of your emotions and help you address your loneliness.

With increased awareness regarding mental health and well-being, resources for counseling have also increased. Today, individuals who are interested in seeking the services of a counselor or therapist can choose the traditional route of in-person sessions in a physician or counselor's office. For example, some schools have in-house student counselors that offer services. Further still, a growing trend in the field of mental healthcare is online counseling.

Are You Feeling Anxiety Or Loneliness?

While many people could benefit from the help of a counselor, not everyone feels as though they have the time or financial resources necessary to seek help. This is where online counseling may be a great option. Online counseling services, such as those provided by BetterHelp, offer licensed, experienced mental health professionals to help navigate through difficult experiences in life. In addition, studies prove that online therapy can significantly reduce the symptoms of depression, anxiety, social phobia, and more, sometimes even better than in-person therapy.

Below are some reviews of BetterHelp counselors from people experiencing similar issues.

Counselor Reviews

"Colleen has been an intricate part of my healing and I know that I would not be as successful as I am without her encouragement, support and advice. She is always there when I need her without hesitation and fully understands the goals I have and the challenges I face. She has wonderful techniques in helping me release and cope with stress and anxiety and it has greatly reduced my depression. Colleen is an absolutely fantastic therapist and I can't recommend her highly enough!"

Takeaway

While loneliness is an emotion everyone experiences from time to time, it can be important to realize that loneliness does not mean you are alone. Many measures can be put in place to help reduce feelings of loneliness. If it becomes a constant problem or you feel overwhelmed, it's okay to reach out for help. 

Whether you choose to pursue growing your social network, participate in group therapy, or initiate one-on-one counseling with a therapist, compassionate people are ready to support you. Take the first step today. 

For additional help & support with your concerns

The information on this page is not intended to be a substitution for diagnosis, treatment, or informed professional advice. You should not take any action or avoid taking any action without consulting with a qualified mental health professional. For more information, please read our terms of use.
Get the support you need from one of our therapistsGet Started