Hello friends, I hope everyone is having a positive start to the week. I was reading a magazine article recently titled, “Is There a Cure for Loneliness?”. I found this topic to be quite interesting. Because I had asked that very question in the past. Hubby and I had been discussing getting me a much-needed companion. I was experiencing severe loneliness during the day. But once hubby (my best friend) was home I felt great.
Almost eight years ago, our sweet boy Izzy came into our lives. He’s lying on the floor now asking for a belly rub. He hates it when I’m on the computer (wink). Although he is a poor conversationalist I certainly feel much less lonely having him with me. Especially when I’m rubbing that furry belly or getting a “just because” kiss on the cheek. I know some don’t care to have a dog lick their cheek, so I’m sorry …but, “I say give mama some kisses”.
There are a lot of social avenues to get involved in online. But, not everyone wants to have only online friendships. There are a lot of older people that have no interest in socializing on the internet, at all. I can certainly understand that. But, I have the good fortune of having cherished relationships with bloggy friends. It’s true, they can’t pop over for a cup of tea or go shopping with you. But, I love having a connection with all of you!
The article mentioned people whose lives just faded away from loneliness. They were living in social isolation. Feeling sick and tired, literally. Did you know our body reacts to loneliness? People who experience severe loneliness, have a biological reflex that triggers inflammation. Emotions can literally attack our bodies, making us feel ill. The article mentioned taking an anti-inflammatory, to “trick” your body, while you consciously change your loneliness pattern. I found that quite interesting. Please don’t start taking an anti-inflammatory without discussing it with your health care provider first.
I immediately thought of time I spend chatting with people at shops, in the checkout line, or at the post office (I know their names, they know mine, etc.,) I find those to be extremely positive “familiar strangers” and I thought it might help to nudge others who are experiencing loneliness. It helped me, that is the main reason for this post today.
I usually spark the conversation with a simple, “how is your morning, etc.) Or, I compliment someone’s, hairstyle, or even the cake mix they are purchasing. I have had very positive experiences 98% of the time (wink). Fellowship at your church can be a wonderful social outlet. Or taking a class ( art, knitting, academics, etc.) can lead to friendships too. Join your high school or college alumni internet group, Facebook has them and there are other websites too. Reconnecting with an old friend is a wonderful way to stop loneliness.
I hope you will consider saying hello, to the cashier, be sincere and ask about their day. Make a mental note of their name ( from their name tag) and address them by name the next time you see them. Or say hello to the person in front or behind you in line. Mention what a lovely “fill in the blank” their wearing, often they will engage in conversation. I realize you can’t live at the market if you are lonely, but these simple things helped me.
The article mentioned a social stigma that implies loneliness means you are a social failure. I’m sorry but I found that a bit ridiculous. Many of us are victims of circumstance. But, I do agree the intense personal experience of being disconnected or feeling all alone can create chaos within us and certainly can make our bodies sick.
If this post is speaking to you, I hope these suggestions have helped. Remember you can always send me an email or leave me a comment too. You can never have too many bloggy friends. Just make sure they aren’t your only means of socializing. Also, you can adopt a pet, unconditional love can smack the loneliness right out of you, wink.
So, I don’t know if there’s a cure for loneliness, but I do think we can help each other out, and maybe, rescue a few animals too. One last thought, being alone is not the same as being lonely. Please don’t think someone is lonely because they are alone. xo
If you feel you are experiencing depression, or you are feeling ill. Please contact your mental health and health care professional.
Have you ever or are you currently, experiencing loneliness? Let’s be bloggy friends! How is your day?
I hope to see you back here on Thursday for the TFT blog hop link party. Mark your calendars, a new giveaway starts on Saturday!