23 Things You Can Do The Moment You Feel Lonely

 

“How do I stop feeling so lonely?” 

This is probably the most common question I’ve been asked lately. I understand why. Loneliness feels awful. Sometimes it just plain HURTS.

But I don’t know if a cure for loneliness even exists. Brene Brown says, “We cannot selectively numb emotions. When we numb the painful emotions, we also numb the positive emotions.” So I guess you can try to get rid of your loneliness, but that might affect how you experience happiness later on. And though loneliness can be a difficult emotion to feel, I think it’s an important one. Loneliness reminds us of our humanity. It shows us that feeling connected to others is important. Loneliness can also provide a wonderful opportunity for healing, reflection, and growth.

That said, the following suggestions are not ways to numb your loneliness or distract you from it. These ideas are to get you moving. Because your number one priority should not be to avoid your pain or numb it.

It should be to create the most amazing life you can for yourself.

So let’s create that life, shall we?

—–
1. Call someone you love: I’m quite partial to calling my grandma. She’s in her nineties and has dementia, so it means a lot to hear her voice and tell her I love her. I like to think it means a lot to her too.

2. Pick five friends and write them each a limerick: If someone wrote me a limerick, I’d hug them. And that’s saying a lot, since I’m no hugger. Not sure how? Watch this.

3. Learn a dance from YouTube: This is a good one. So is this one. And I STILL need someone to teach me how to Dougie

4. Dance in your underwear: Seriously. Might as well take advantage of being alone, right?

5. GET OFF FACEBOOK!!!: Facebook has to be the worst way to spend your time when you’re feeling lonely. Stop looking at pictures of her wedding and her kids. Log out of Facebook and log back in to your life.

6. Find a place where you can volunteer: Volunteering is a great way to meet new friends, but it is also a good way to focus on someone else, instead of yourself.

7. Cry: Let it out as much as you need to.

8. Get inspired by a Ted Talk (or three): Here’s my favorite. Here’s my second favorite. And here’s a close third.

9. Start a gratitude practice: Did you know that expressing gratitude correlates positively with happiness? It does! Each day for one month, a good friend and I shared one thing we felt grateful for with each other. Not only did I feel closer to my friend, but I felt happier and more appreciative of my life. If you haven’t already, I encourage you to adopt a gratitude practice. You can even download the Happier app to get started.

10. Check out meetup.com: Meetups can be a great way to meet new people who share your interests, especially if you live near a bigger city.

11. If you can’t be with friends, watch Friends: This show is, hands down, one of my favorite shows ever. My loneliness always seems to fade away when I’m watching Friends. Probably because they feel like my actual friends.

12. Enjoy this lovely video: If you do only one thing on this list, do this. You just might be inspired to tackle the world alone with a little more confidence.

13. Start a blog: If you’re into that kind of thing, I highly recommend it. I’ve met so many amazing friends from all over the world through blogging. If you’re in your twenties, here’s an awesome community to check out.

14. Create a vision board: What do you want your life to look like? Get some magazines, scissors, poster board, and glue and go to town. Hang your vision board up to remind you of the awesome life you’re creating and what fun things are still in store for you.

15. Move: Head to the gym. Go to the yoga studio. Jump on your bed. I don’t care, just move that wonderful body of yours. Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy. (And happy people just don’t shoot their husbands. They just don’t.)

16. Befriend an animal: If you have a pet, hug it — unless it’s a snake or a porcupine. For the rest of you, pet-sit a friend’s pet or visit an animal shelter. If you want, you can borrow my hyperactive hound dog, Walker.

17. Take a nap: Naps are awesome. Take one.

18. Drive: If you have a car, get in it and go somewhere new.

19. Practice some self-care: Check out this video to learn how.

20. Find a therapist or hire a coach: If your loneliness is really getting out of control, you might need some professional support. (I help heartbroken women heal and create amazing lives that they love, if that happens to be you.)

21. Engage in your SSB (Secret Single Behavior): What’s your SSB? Mine is eating cookies in bed while watching House Hunters. Unfortunately I rarely get to eat cookies in bed anymore because my husband doesn’t like the crumbs. That’s why I encourage you to do whatever it is you like to do when you’re alone as much as possible.

22. Take yourself out on a date: Taking yourself out ensures you’ll get to do something YOU like to do. My favorite solo date night is going to the movies by myself. What about you?

23. Own it: Own your loneliness. Don’t fear it. Don’t numb it. Acknowledge that it is a part of the human experience. Say it out loud:

I

feel

LONELY!

Then breathe. Because just because you feel lonely doesn’t mean you are lonely. And just because you feel lonely now doesn’t mean you always will.

How do you best deal with loneliness?


Other posts you may enjoy:

Find Hope in the Unknown, Not Fear

Your Story Is Sacred

Life Is Meant to Be Lived, Not Forced

This S-Word Changed My Life

Also, be sure to learn more about me and how I help people.

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This entry was posted in Inspiration, Self-love and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , .

85 Responses

  1. Julia Fisher says:

    You are so right about watching Friends. I own the entire series on DVD and any time I pop one of those in while I am cleaning or crafting or just sitting there watching it on the couch feeling sad it totally perks me up!

    • Oh man, I LOVE me some Friends. It’s one of those shows that can ALWAYS cheer me up. Except for the episode when Ross and Rachel break up. That one just depresses me…until I remember they end up together in the end, so it’s all okay. Ha!

  2. Liz Ortiz says:

    This is an EXCELLENT list!!

  3. Lea says:

    A good way to combat loneliness is to become an active member in your community. You can volunteer in some way or even join a community/club with common interests. I’m considering joining an association/group that is centered around a buding interest.

    ~Lea

    • Lea, that’s awesome! Ya, when you volunteer like that, it helps you to feel like you’re part of something bigger than yourself…which is always a great way to combat loneliness. What kind of group will you be joining?

      • Lea says:

        Exactly Akriah! Not exactly sure yet. I’m thinking something female and/or entrepreneur center. I’m looking to connect with people who are on the same path as I am.

        • Ohhh yes…that’d be great for you. I recently started getting involved with a women’s entrepreneurial group and it’s been really good for me. I love meeting new friends. Good luck with finding a good group to connect with!

  4. Khara House says:

    I love this, and not just because I totally called it that one of the YouTube dances would be the wobble (which I will be doing shortly) :)

    I would have to add “sing” to this list … especially karaoke. Especially karaoke songs you don’t actually take seriously. Such as performing the most dramatic rendition of James Blunt’s “Beautiful” you can or performing “Don’t Rain on My Parade” in your best Christopher Walken impression (which I will also be doing shortly).

    Thanks for sharing this instant joy list!! ♥

  5. heidi says:

    I love the dance in your underwear one. It’s great! Hope you have a great day!

    Heidi’s
    Wanderings

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  7. Thank you for this, trying to figure out how to save it for quick reference. I am currently separated from my husband (at my request) and struggle with loneliness now and again and am trying to balance it with my being an introvert and needing and liking the time to re-charge myself to be outward focused.

    Again, thanks!

    Oh, and #5, getting off of Facebook, I think you tipped my indecisiveness in favor of shutting it down.

    • Ya? Thanks so much for that…I’m so glad you find this post useful! Facebook can be such a time suck for me. If I didn’t use it for so much marketing, I’d be tempted to shut it down too!

  8. My GOODness!!! I’m glad I kept clicking! You know I loved the ‘You Complete Me’ story but this one Speaks To Me. I have so many friends that don’t know the difference between alone and lonely. They ask me all the time, “Aren’t you lonely???” NO!!! hahahahaha!!! SWEET lord no! At 36(YIKES!!!), I’ve been engaged 3 times and I passed three rings back with a Good heart knowing that i COULD not live with that person. I am Truly happy for the happily married(Congrats to You, btw!) but I can’t be with someone just for the sake of saying I have a man.

    How do I deal with living single? I have trained all of my friends to greet me with a hug and a kiss. Yup. It’s mandatory ;~) I have a puppy. She is ALWAYS glad to see me :) I confess to making out with a friend from time to time like filthy teens if I have gone for a stretch without any personal attention ;D AND I stay pretty busy with my own interests.

    I have admirers. & when I’m good and ready, I’m sure I’ll date again :~)

  9. Nina W says:

    A couple years ago my date was cancelled, so I planned a romantic bubble bath with a new book and some sparkling grape juice for myself (since I lived in a dry county and under 21) all for myself. I had to go with Redbox and Margarita slushies since Walmart was sucking it up that night, but it was seriously one of the best times. I loved taking myself out on a date.

  10. Pingback: Let's Get Grateful, Girl | akirah robinson

  11. sb938 says:

    I love this! It really helped me. That TED talk on vulnerability was amazing. Thank you.

  12. eymcap says:

    I saw i was the only male feeling lonely here, but anyway I like that “Don’t fear it! I will say it loud, I feel lonely!” Because it doesn’t mean I will always be lonely or sad or it’s the end of the world! Thanks

  13. Victoria O says:

    Thank you so much. Watching some of the TED videos above helped me deal with, not just loneliness, but helplessness. I’d forgotten how awesomely inspiring they could be!

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  16. new born says:

    Hi! Akirah thanks for sharing this wonderful things, including the TED videos. Thanks. You do not know how much you have helped me. I am grateful to you. Thank you !

  17. Logan Bennett says:

    Well i have been pressured into doing drugs and after awhile i felt like i was living the good life, but then all my other friends (Jocks,Athletes,ETC) just stopped talking to me. i havent talked to anyone except mom and dad for 2 months now. im lonely. my mom trwats me like shit, my dad doesnt care and he is always gone and away. im just gonna end it right

    • Logan, please please please talk to someone about how you’re feeling. Please call the National Suicide Hotline if you’re feeling really down. Their number is 1-800-273-8255. Please hang in there. It gets better.

    • Malissa says:

      Hey Logan. Im always interested in a good conversation. If you want you can give me a call. My name is Malissa. just email me, if you would like to talk, Email- smithkia2012@yahoo.com

  18. Ally Biase says:

    Thank you for all the ideas although I can’t do some because I don’t have my license yet

  19. i love this. Thank you for sharing!

  20. Trae Tha Tr uth says:

    I’m lonely 90% of the time… My favorite songs are No help w/ Trae, and Keep on Rollin by Trae lol… Anyways I really feel empty sometimes so I keep to myself. I feel like I’ve been corrupted.. I’ve been single for a long, long time.. Somebody once told me that humans are not built to live life on their own, and most of the time I see what she means, I be going crazy sometimes.. I let my emotions get the best of me and spaz out on different people for no reason, but of course they don’t give a damn and continue to live their own lives not giving a fuck about me.. I guess that’s because I’m an asshole and I don’t care about them.. They know I’m cold hearted, regardless of how innocent looking I am, or use to be anyways I’m crooked, and I don’t know how to stop it, if I talk to you it’s only because you have something to offer to me, and I don’t know why I’m like this… I don’t think I know how it feels to love anymore, how it feels to be loved, and how to love others, I guess that’s because I feel empty… I just do what I do to stay sane and get money one day, those are the only two things I care about… I guess I’m lonely because I wanna fuck everybody I see, I mean anyone who’s attractive of course, I always wanted an open relationship but it never lasts… This article didn’t help me at all btw, anyways I can’t settle for just one girl cause I will get bored and treat her differently to seperate from her… I’m not really a peoples person, I don’t like being around people most of the time, but I don’t like the pain that I feel from being an outcast

    • AzhighAziam says:

      Wlell your problem starts with you fking bitches is to hide the pain it isnt gna make you happy look deep inside you and find out whats hurting you
      you need to let some ppl in and even tho people will never truely understand how you feel
      just tlk bout it n getting a hug is sometimes good enough to get you by plus i smoke a shit load of weeeeeeeed thats what keeps.me going -.- lol

  21. Wild Boy :0 says:

    I am so glad you took the time to make this. I was lonely and busy throwing a pity party for myself and afterwards I came to the conclusion that only I can get myself out of this rut!!! After reading through some sad forums of others (whose parties seemed to be in full swing) I came to this. Thank You and God!!! It’s in my favorites now and was just the kick in the balls I needed :) (I have them, I am a crazy white boy!) I am not familiar with any of your other work but I would add that to your list of stuff to do while bored and lonely, read the writings of Akirah Robinson!! You seem funny and have inspired me (feel special :P) Thank you again for the great post!!!!

  22. Liz Barnett says:

    Thank you so much for this post! I’ve done a few of them, like dating myself. I’ve been single most of my adult life and have only had a few long term relationships so this is something I’ve worked through for sure!

  23. scott small says:

    The whole idea of taking yourself out on a date thing sounds like something I should start trying. Been suffering from loneliness for almost a year now and it just doesn’t get any better. :(

  24. Elsa says:

    Well,i have not tryed anything,except #12,but i will soon and it was good reading your article.Thanks and….KEEP IT UP!
    Thumbs up for you!

  25. Kate says:

    I really think this helped me a lot! You are an awesome blogger! How do you start one though? Love this entry!
    – Kate :)

    • Akirah says:

      Hi Kate! Just write. You can set up a free account on WordPress or Blogger. Write whatever makes you feel better and start out by sharing with your friends and family. If you’re in your twenties, a community that really helps me was 20something bloggers. I’d definitely check them out too. Good luck!

  26. Kate says:

    Lovely just lovely! Helped me so much! I would do a blog but I don’t know how. I also don’t know what to do on it! Help me on that please.
    -Kate

  27. Katrina says:

    Love this list! The beginning really hooked me in from the get go, as I have been a past offender of numbing all emotions. Unfortunately this means that any common emotions I now have feel 10x more intense. >_>

    What drove it home though was your last point. A good reminder that my life isn’t lonely in the slightest, even when I think it is!

  28. Lee Davy says:

    Thanks for taking the time to write this. I was feeling so lonely today and now, after reading your list, I feel a whole lot better. I am going to share this with my community.

    PS: I would totally add singing to the list, this always cheers me up.

    Lee

  29. Scorsby says:

    I just wanted to say I was feeling really low but I did the five limericks thing and that occupied a fun hour and I felt a whole lot better afterwards. Thank you.

  30. Manisha says:

    non of this matters when you are lonely or depressed! help..

    • Akirah says:

      Hi Manisha…I would recommend that if you feel you might be experiencing depression that you seek professional help. You’re right; these ideas are only to help you cope with loneliness in the moment. But they are not meant to be long-term solutions nor will they address the underlying causes of your loneliness.

      Good luck.

  31. Madison says:

    Hi, I’d just like to say that this helped me a lot. Lately I’ve been feeling pretty lonely and knowing that I’m not alone in this feeling makes me feel better about it. Also, is like to add on that reading a book or starting a tv show series helps a lot. Thanks!!!

  32. eebest8 says:

    Im thankful for the article. Much obliged.

  33. Phil says:

    I have a lot of friends all in close relationships while I’m struggling in a long distance one and so often feel very lonely and sad. I’m going to try a few of these things and hopefully they’ll help.

    Thank you.

  34. Bree says:

    I have to admit, I was actually rolling my eyes before I read this thinking it wasn’t going to be anything new. But to my surprise..This is the first list where I actually agree on all the things that are listed! How awesome! I think I’m going to have a good cry, take a nap then get up and go for a good run and sweat. And you’re right, Facebook is a bad place if you’re lonely! That’s what I’ve been doing when I’m lonely and I get lonlier afterwards. Thank you!!!

  35. Vicki says:

    I’m at my lowest ever point and thanks you have given me a little hope and something to do x

  36. sahar says:

    i love all of your advice and i agree you thank you for them and god bless you my dear :)

  37. Tab says:

    Thank you for posting this. It’s been the best article so far i’ve read on lonliness. It’s helped me tremendously!

  38. Michelle says:

    Thank you so much for this article. I loved your suggestions on learning how to do a dance on youtube, watching friends (I also feel super comforted when i watch this show!), watching a TED video, and writing in a gratitude journal! I wish I had the courage to call someone I love just to talk, I’m not much of a phone person.

  39. Danen says:

    have been with my husband for 18 years, I am 33. I feel completely alone. I have cut off my friendships because my husband didn’t like them. I have grown distant from my family because I am the only married one. My husband has no time for me, he likes to play video games and ride his motorcycle. When I asked for more of his time, he got mad and called me names. I am going to try this list, as much of it as I can, and see how I feel.

    • Lauren says:

      Read the book entitled “why does he do that”? for those of us women that have gotten out of abusive relationships, it is definitely an eye opener.

  40. Jordyn says:

    I love the How to be Alone video, thank you so much for this list it’s helping me a lot.

  41. Barbara says:

    Taking a walk in nature helps alot because for some reason nature has a calming effect,atleast for me

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  43. val says:

    This helped email make my own list and not crying anymore.

  44. Natalie says:

    Nice list to get youself busy for an hour or a few but it doesn’t work in a long run. Anyways the empty day feels like another survived day. Mornings especially hurt. It’s just hard to force yourself to be happy and do some fun stuff when naturally nothing gives any satisfaction any more. Movies and SSB help in the evenings though :)

    • Akirah says:

      Your right…these suggestions are only meant to distract and amuse you in the moment…but they won’t fix any of the underlying issues causing your loneliness. If you feel like you might be experiencing depression, I definitely recommend that you pursue help. Good luck!

  45. Emanuel Rios says:

    I was having a pretty bad night. I felt that hole that one feels in their heart when their lonely.
    But this helped so much. I mean, that last one, just say it. I don’t know, I felt empowered, I smiled. And realized, I have time. If I have time to feel lonely, I have time to pamper myself. To take care of me. Thank you so much. It’s funny how one well written to do list can completely change one’s perspective. Please keep doing what you’re doing.

    • Akirah says:

      You’re so right, Emmanuel. When you’re feeling low, you probably are in need of care. It’s sometimes hard to muster up the energy to care for ourselves, but it’s necessary. I’m glad my list helped you a bit. Hang in there, friend!

  46. Briana says:

    This list is fantastic. I’m going through a rough patch and I’m feeling pretty down and lonely. This list has given me some direction to navigate my way through it. Thank you. :)

  47. Fanny says:

    I love this :) I felt lonely one night, even though I have lots of friends and family who loves me. It was just saturday and I didn’t have anything to do and no one to be around. It made me feel alone and focused on all the negative in my life. This make my awful night that much better <3

  48. Hannah says:

    This was lovely, cheerful, and super helpful. As a Freshman in college, it can be difficult to be around so many people but also alone. I am definetly doing these things! Thanks!

  49. ziya ul haq says:

    friends the best thing is to do that …..
    girls are think that they were break any bodye’s heart as like a game but we have to teach them that we r not dependent on them so friendssss come on wake up and do against of it okkkkk. byeee friends

  50. Rosanna says:

    Thanks for writing about that TED talk about vulnerability, so inspiring!

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  52. Just a guy says:

    By reading this already made me feel less lonely , thank you so much.

  53. N.G. says:

    rEALLY liked you article.
    Specially the dancing ur underwear point.
    Very original I must say :D

  54. Fallen says:

    So many Questions ! Just lost! No friends . Really would like just a friend to talk to .

  55. Vishal says:

    Hey,

    This is an amazing list. Also all videos you suggested, great. I was feeling so lonely half n hour ago and now I am so alive. Thank you so much. Keep up this good work.

    Thanks

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