Loneliness is considered a Modern-Day Epidemic. We are 30% more lonely than we were in 1984, and this statistic keeps rising. It seems coincidental with the parallel to the divorce rate and decreased rate of marriage. But with being more connected than ever, this paradox follows the trends of polarity we are seeing in many areas of our human existence. Without belaboring the point with all kinds of theories, let’s dive into why you are going through this loneliness and how you can incorporate 5 ways to shake off the loneliness bug.
The Breakup Virus
When you have gone through a divorce or breakup, you must allow yourself the grieving process. It’s similar to having a virus in your body. You have to ride it out.
If you try to numb and distract yourself from the pain, you will inevitably become stuck in a phase. The most common phase we get stuck is in the last one – Isolation.
Let’s review the 6 stages of heartbreak.
1. Shock – In the moments after being blindsided by a breakup, your heart rate might drop.
2. Trauma – Once the shock subsides, major emotional stress sets in and triggers your sympathetic nervous system.
3. Pain – In the moments after being blindsided by a breakup, your heart rate might drop. Once the shock subsides, major emotional stress sets in and triggers your sympathetic nervous system. The brain regions that process the pain of social rejection or loss also process.
4. Anger – You’re critical thinking skills and self-control both take a dive after social rejection.
5. Denial- The areas that control behavioral adjustments and thinking toward the future are also lighting up.
6. Isolation – You believe you aren’t lovable and don’t want to see or speak with anyone.
When you are stuck in the belief that you aren’t lovable and you can’t attract a new soulmate, you may find that no matter what you do, you can’t seem to connect with people like you used to. There is an energetic force at play here.
It usually indicates that you have not fully grieved the loss. Somewhere you haven’t fully allowed the feeling of anger, pain, and trauma to leave your body and mind.
What’s going on is also a type of self-sabotage. When you are in this stage of isolation, you genuinely believe the “story” that because of the breakup you aren’t loveable. This is simply a belief based on a fear that you will be alone forever.
When the fear drives the belief, then it becomes a law in your mind. You then start to compare yourself to others in your life who are in relationships or are having successful connections. You become suspicious, untrusting, and feel left out. This energetic belief becomes your foundation, and you become stuck what I call the loneliness loop.
What Loneliness Does To You
If you are stuck in chronic loneliness, you may be susceptible to more significant health risks than you realize.
According to a 20-year study from the University of Chicago’s Centre for Cognitive & Social Neuroscience, loneliness causes:
increase in death by 26%
They also concluded that feeling lonely is as dangerous as obesity and is like smoking 15 cigarettes a day!
Before reaching for substances that offer a temporary fix, you can effectively overcome this state of loneliness by hitting it at all ends. And by that, I mean take a mind, body, spirit approach by addressing your mindset – release your body of the physical manifestations of loneliness and then learn techniques to keep you out of the loneliness loop.
5 Ways to Shake off Loneliness
We all want a quick way out of our pain. It’s uncomfortable, feels terrible, and you only have so many tears! But like a virus, there is no magic pill. The only way to come out of loneliness is to go through loneliness. There is no detour to this condition.
However, while you are going through it, the amount of time spent is up to you. Here are five ways to shake it off more quickly:
Loneliness can bring on anxiety and panic. To swiftly quell these feelings, incorporate a gentle breathing technique. Inhale through our nostrils on the count of 6, hold for 6, release for 6.
2. Journal every night
By downloading your worries and thoughts that keep you stuck in loneliness, you will be releasing their hold on you.
Write down words that you feel while in loneliness. Acknowledge them. This is where you are right now. Now write the opposite feeling words. Observe how those new words feel to you. Now reframe your feeling sentences and embrace the new feeling words as real right now.
Feeling isolated and disconnected to the world can be reversed by incorporating grounding techniques on a daily basis. Ground by walking barefoot on the grass in the park or hug a tree. Hug a friend or your pet for a full minute regularly.
5. Reach out
Even though you have fear, put it aside and reach out to 5 friends that you haven’t spoken to in a while. Ask them out for a coffee or movie date. Be vulnerable and let them know what you are going through. By sharing your feelings, you will permit them to embrace their emotions. Feeling safe through vulnerable sharing is key to relationship building.
No matter what stage of heartbreak grief, you think you’ve missed, allow all of your feelings during this process. Before reaching for substances that offer a temporary fix, you will be able to effectively overcome this loneliness loop, and you’ll regain your sense of self-worth and confidence when you incorporate these five techniques.
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