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Culture

Loneliness Survival Kit

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We’ve all been there, and yet somehow we think there is no one else in the world who could possibly understand. That’s how loneliness works, it creates even more isolation. Even though we know intellectually that things could be a lot worse, loneliness can feel almost unbearable at times, a black hole that we don’t know how to climb out of. While the situations may vary, we can all relate to the feeling.

The good news is, that feeling is often temporary, and if we can fill ourselves up with a little love and a new perspective, we’ll survive it and even come out stronger. But we know it’s not easy, that’s why we’re packing you (and ourselves!) a virtual survival kit, for the times you just feel not good enough, unloved, and alone. Along with your favorite movies, music, and indulgent snack, pull out this article, and let these reminders help you weather the storm:

Compassion

First and foremost, give yourself a break! It’s okay to feel lonely, everyone does at one time or another. The fact that you feel loneliness means that you are capable of feeling great love. You crave it and therefore feel helpless in its absence.

Even science has shown that not only do we long for love and connection, we need it. Consider the hospitals around the country that employ “baby cuddlers”, volunteers who come to hold and cuddle babies who have had to be separated from parental care for whatever reason. Those babies that receive human contact and attention have stronger vital signs and are more relaxed. At our core, we have a deep need to connect with others.

If you are feeling disconnected, try reaching out to someone you love, or find someone who might be lonely themselves— helping someone else can get you out of your own slump, and the love just multiplies!

Self-Love

We often feel we need approval from others in order to feel good about ourselves. Just like you can feel lonely in a room full of people, the opposite can be true: we can be alone but not lonely if we remember that our value does not come from external things, but from the fact that we are sons and daughters of God. We are valuable, beautiful, talented and special in the eyes of our Heavenly Parent. Who are we to argue with God?

Do something nice for yourself, whether it’s a bubble bath, a night out, or a favorite hobby.

Perspective

Even God gets lonely, as Father Moon reminds us,

“No matter how all-knowing and all-powerful God may be, without a partner He is a lonely and sad God.” (Cheong Seong Gyeong, pg. 75)

Though loneliness makes us think no one else understands, we are, paradoxically, together in our loneliness. When we feel that desperate emotion, it’s like a secret peek into the heart of God, who longs for and misses His and Her children every day. When we turn to our Heavenly Parent in those moments, we not only soothe our own heart, but also God’s.

Insight

Our feelings, even negative ones, can be useful. If we stop and listen to them, they can be tools to help guide us.

Maybe you are at a big party, surrounded by hundreds of people, but you feel alone. Ask yourself “Why?”. Is it because you feel like you don’t fit in? Are you trying to be someone you’re not? Do the surroundings resonate with your values? If you delve deep and answer these questions, loneliness can be a signal for how to change our behavior or environment.

Let loneliness be a teacher, don’t just wallow in it, ask it questions and learn from it.

Never Ever Forget

You are not alone. You are loved. WE LOVE YOU!!!

Add to our survival kit in the comments!! How do you deal with loneliness? What advice would you give someone who is feeling lonely?