10 practical tips on how to overcome loneliness when single
The season of singleness can feel lonely at times. And as much as you want to suppress loneliness, it is actually healthier to acknowledge the feeling and react to it.
In this post, I want to shine a light on the effects of loneliness and what to do when you feel lonely.
Why are you feeling lonely in your Single Season?
If you genuinely want to be married it is easy to feel the void of a spouse even more. The knowledge that you don’t have a companion to share your life with can be staggering and the idea of having to manage life alone is frustrating at times.
And what makes it even worse is when people make you feel like you are not content with God because you feel lonely. However, God made us for companionship and community. And your desire to be in a healthy relationship is a good and natural desire.
That’s why feeling lonely in your Single Season can surface as a byproduct of the good desire to be in a relationship. However, the extent to which loneliness negatively affects your daily lives is a direct correlation of the value you give your desire to be married.
So, while I want to affirm the desire to be married, I also want to warn you not to make marriage an idol. Because if you do, that is a sign that you are not ready to get married.
Difference between being alone and feeling lonely
There is a difference between being alone and feeling lonely.
Being alone is a state of being. In this state, you are aware of the fact that most of your time is spend entertaining yourself, but you don’t mind. You are at peace and content with your own company and know how to utilize this season well.
Feeling lonely is a state of mind. This state, unfortunately, doesn’t feel great. You feel a void in your life that you can’t seem to fill. You are longing for something and believe that it’s male company. Loneliness makes you feel unhappy or even depressed.
And yes, there are times when being alone and feeling lonely overlap, but it usually doesn’t stay like that.
Signs of loneliness
You feel increased fatigue
Even though you slept for 8 hours you still feel tired when you wake up. When you feel lonely you tend to feel more restless and tired.
You get sick more often
Loneliness can have an impact on our immune system, the same way stress can. That’s why when you are lonely you are more prone to catching a cold and be out for a few days.
You feel blah
With increased loneliness comes decreased resilience. You are more likely to feel irritated,
Frustrated or sad and hopeless. Things that you used to be able to tolerate now overwhelm you and lead to increased anxiety.
You escape into the online world
When you are feeling alone you might spend more time online because social media becomes your main source of interaction. Unfortunately, it doesn’t solve but aggravated the problem.
You gain weight
A lot of time when we don’t feel too good, we compensate the feeling with food. Who doesn’t know lonely nights on the couch with ice cream or chocolate? But loneliness also decreases our motivation to work out which in the long run can lead to serious health problems.
The ultimate cure for loneliness
As mentioned above, loneliness is internal. It’s a whole inside of you that you are trying to fill and no matter the number of people, money or things you have you can’t seem to fill it.
It’s a void that can only be filled by God.
In order to cure your loneliness from the inside out, you need to cultivate a relationship with God. He created you and knows every part of you.
He knows the anxiety you feel about remaining single for the rest of your life. He knows the desire you have to share this life with a special companion. He knows how to bring you joy in a time of waiting for his best.
First, you need Jesus, and then you can use these practical steps to overcome loneliness.
10 Practical Tips on How to Overcome Loneliness as Single
1. Tell your friends
A lot of times you think that you are the only one that is lonely and are ashamed to tell your friends.
Newsflash, loneliness is very common, and more people suffer from it than you think. That’s why it’s important you talk to your friends and ask them for more community.
Even though our generation is known for being more connected online than offline, a lot of people long for physical connection
You will be surprised how many people will appreciate a weekly hangout, especially in the winter months.
2. Be intentional about meeting people
So, here’s the thing, I love socializing. And yes, I know it’s not for everybody, but if you are feeling lonely you need to be more intentional about meeting (new) people.
Look into meetup groups of people that share the same hobby or passion as you. Join these groups in a casual setting with no pressure. That way if you like the crowd you can engage in a few good conversations and if you don’t you can leave without anybody noticing.
Either way, it will encourage you to get out of the house, engage with others and feel less isolated.
It’s important to remember that long seasons of feeling lonely can easily lead to depression. And isolation plays a big factor in that.
3. Delete social media
As you know I have a love/hate relationship with social media.
I love it when the light is right, and I can take a cute selfie. I hate it when I look a mess and everybody on my timeline is using the hashtag #blessedlife.
However, one of the biggest dangers of social media is that we use it to compare our lives to other people’s life. The only problem, most people only share their highlight reels. So, you sitting on your bed with a headwrap and mismatched socks will always look sad compared to theirs.
That’s why if you are experiencing loneliness, consider staying off social media for a while.
Do a social media fast, where you use your new-found free time to do a bible study instead of envying some influencers perfectly color coordinated feed. You will see that will lower your anxiety and loneliness and increase your joy, creativity, and mindfulness.
4. Learn to enjoy your own company
Let me introduce to you – Justine Mfulama, Single-extraordinaire. Yes ma’am I am a pro in entertaining myself, enjoying my own company and laughing about my own jokes.
How did I do that? No idea. I guess the past 8 years were good for something.
No seriously. I just had to learn how to bring joy into my own life, instead of waiting for someone else to do it. I treat myself, by taking care of my body by working out, of my mind by reading and my soul by spending time with God.
All these habits helped me enjoy my own company and learn to know what makes me happy. Now the question is, what makes you happy?
Once you find out, repeat those activities over and over again and watch the loneliness vanish.
5. Find and work on your purpose
Viktor Frankl said in his book Man’s Search for Meaning that the chief desire of man is not pleasure but meaning. Ultimately, your desire to find a community or be in a relationship is not to have fun every weekend, but to be part of something bigger than ourselves.
So, what is greater than being part of God’s vision for this world. What is greater than being part of spreading the gospel? Easy. Nothing!
The easiest way to distract yourself from the search of meaning through a relationship is by busying yourself with the meaning that God has appointed to your life.
You play a role in the puzzle that is humanity.
Just like one single domino can affect dozens of others, your obedience, discipline, and perseverance affect hundreds of other lives in God’s kingdom.
So, overcome your loneliness by finding and working on your purpose. Use all the free time identify your unique gifts and talents and create something only you can do.
6. Leave the house
Let’s be honest, how often have you complained these last few weeks that you are lonely, but then you look on Facebook and find a bunch of cool events in your neighborhood?
Well, guess what, the only person that can change something about your state of mind is you.
Get out of the house and change your routine. Go to a coffee shop to read a book. Stroll over a festival site and enjoy a waffle or ice cream.
Stop throwing yourself a pity party and instead crash your neighbor’s party.
Create moments of joy for yourself by embracing being alone.
7. Start a journal to track your blessings
I know I say it all the time, but I love love love journaling. It’s so therapeutic and the more you write the more you think.
If you are experiencing loneliness, it’s usually because your mind reminds you of all the things you don’t have.
Break that habit by tricking your mind into remembering all the great things you do have. Studies show that we internalize things better if we write them down. So get yourself a cute journal and start listing your blessings.
That way every time you feel lonely you can use that list to cheer yourself up.
With the holidays approaching, this one shouldn’t be too hard to accomplish.
The beauty about volunteering is that you are reminded that there is a place for you in your community. A place to serve.
While serving might not seem glamorous or fun, it is humbling and fulfilling. It reminds you of the wide palette of challenges people face.
Not to say that your problems aren’t significant. But more so to remind you that every human being has to fight a battle, but it’s up to you to decide if you want to go out without bruises and loose or endure a black eye and win.
9. Check yourself
One of the things you want to avoid when you feel lonely is to sabotage yourself. Establishing connections and friendships is a two-way street which only works if both people are willing to be open.
Do some introspection and consider letting your guard down. Try to be as positive as possible and trust God to bring good people into your life.
Taking the focus off yourself and opening yourself up to others will allow you to build deeper connections and stronger relationships.
10. See a therapist
I wholeheartedly believe that if you know God and practice the last 9 activities from time to time, you can overcome loneliness.
But I also believe that you should seek professional help if you can’t fight this alone.
Therapists are trained to identify signs of loneliness and will advise you on actions to take. Because what is important is to get better and not worse.
Don’t be ashamed to talk to seek professional help, because more often than not we need it.
These are my 10 tips to overcome loneliness. And as much as I think you can conquer loneliness I also want to remind you that if you take the right steps now, you can prevent one way worse health issue and that’s depression.
Seriously, analyze the root of your loneliness, the signs you’ve been seeing in your life and consider executing the 10 tips to overcome loneliness. Because if you nip it in the bud now, you can avoid depression.
And don’t let the world corrupt you into thinking you are alone out here when in reality you have the holy spirit by your side every day. Jesus didn’t leave you unarmed against your own thoughts and the lies of the enemy.
Instead, he equipped you with the holy spirit that speaks Jesus’ truth. Cultivate your own relationship with the holy spirit to experience real joy. Use these 10 Prayers improve your single season.
Do you know any other tips to overcome loneliness when single? Share BELOW!