Avoiding Loneliness – Steps To Beating Beginning Stages of Depression

Despite the advent of all sorts of new technologies to keep in constant communication with others, people are starting to feel more and more isolated in society today. Humans are social animals, and the Internet tends to act as a sort of buffer between you and any sort of real intimacy. Real relationships are built on more then what a person has to say, they’re built on eye contact and unspoken physical communication.

Loneliness stems from a lot of different sources. Most often it will come with relocating. Sometimes It will come with the loss of a loved one, or when a relationship becomes boring or repetitive. If most of your social connections revolve around work, then simply changing jobs can do it. As soon as you lose a sense of self worth you somehow become invisible to the rest of the world.

Here are some tips for avoiding loneliness:

Exercise.

This is the easiest step to take in avoiding loneliness, because it can be done without actually leaving the house or neighborhood. Exercise releases endorphins into your brain, which give you a feeling of personal well being. Living a sedentary lifestyle, sitting in front of your computer all day, can really depress a person quickly. Exercise also keeps your body in shape, which in turn increases your sense of self worth. It’s a sad truth that todays society considers physical beauty to be a sign of worthiness, but there’s no use in trying to fight it. Get yourself in shape and people will start to take interest in you.

Small talk.

Approaching strangers to talk to is an awful, nerve-wracking experience, regardless of whether or not you’re asking them out on a date, or simply trying to start a conversation. Believe it or not, taking small steps helps a lot in regard to the art of conversation. Make it a goal to engage ten people a day in conversation. Nothing deep, unless that’s what it turns into. Simply buy a cup of coffee and ask the clerk how they’re doing:

“Hi, how are you today?”
“I’m fine, thanks”

That counts as a conversation, and the more you do it, the easier it gets.

Get out of the house.

Let’s say you do all your work from a laptop. Take your laptop and go to a coffee shop with wireless Internet. Even if you don’t actually talk to anyone, you get a sense of “I’ve been out doing something”. Houses are a place you want to come home to, not hang out in all day.

Go somewhere that forces you to socialize.

I’m not talking a bar or a concert, because those don’t actually force you to talk to people. There’s nothing worse then sitting alone in a bar trying to look like you don’t mind that you’re alone. Join a knitting circle or something, even if normally you wouldn’t be interested in it. I use the example of a knitting circle because in most big cities they’ll be full of twenty-somethings, and you can’t do anything but chat when you’re all sitting in a coffee shop, clacking needles together.

Do something ballsy.

Go to a poetry open mic, or a comedy open mic or (God forbid) karaoke. Beside feeling kind of bad-ass afterwards, the groups of people that do things like that tend to be fairly close knit. More then likely you’ll be approached by someone who says “I haven’t seen you here before”. This is especially true if you’re a girl.

Religion.

If you’re already a religious person then by all means go join the closest church or temple that fits you. If you’re not religious, then the idea of hanging out with someone else from an organized religion probably creeps you out a bit. If this is the case, I would recommend a Wiccan or Pagan group. The “rules” of these alternative religions tend to be very loose, so no one can call bullshit on you for your beliefs.

There you have it, plenty of sure fire tips for avoiding loneliness. Keep in mind that loneliness can sometimes be a symptom of a much deeper problem, like clinical depression. If you already have lots of friends and things to do, but still feel isolated, you should probably seek professional help. A few of the right kind of prescribed pills can work miracles in this day and age.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


− 3 = one