Whether you are physically isolated or in a room full of people (pre-Covid, of course), loneliness can strike anyone at any time. Loneliness is not just a feeling. Studies have shown more severe effects, such as depression and suppressed immune system. Not surprisingly, in a culture where we are “connected” all the time, the rate of loneliness continues to climb.
One in three adults suffers from the potentially devastating state of loneliness.
In a world where it seems that we’re always “on,” we are feeling more disconnected and lonely than ever before. By definition, loneliness is the despair and discomfort between the desire for social connection and one’s experience of it. It’s not only about the number of connections but the quality and authenticity of relationships as well. It’s tricky because the experience is unique to each individual. As Christians, we know the Lord is always with us, yet one in three adults suffers from loneliness.
How can this be?
Many factors can contribute to feeling lonely. It’s no one’s fault…we are all susceptible to negative beliefs and bias towards our relationships, such as:
- Feeling left out
- Feeling lack of companionship
- Fear of rejection
- Lack of “safe” people to turn to
What can you do to combat loneliness?
Awareness is key. Being able to identify and name your feeling is the beginning of healing. What lies are you believing? Any part of your life that feels hopeless, is under the authority of a lie. Ask God to bring Truth to the light. Along with prayer, your best line of defense is to be intentional about getting connected. It may be hard at first, so start small and give yourself plenty of grace. We talk more about ways to overcome loneliness in Episode 15 of the Sacred Grounds Podcast, How to Intentionally Connect to Combat Loneliness.
Here are a few ideas to help break the cycle of loneliness:
- Get out of your head and get into a community. Join a small group (or start one!), take a class, join a club.
- Be intentional about touching base with other people in your life. Even in isolation, we have ways to Zoom call, phone call, and face time. You could start by inviting a friend to a virtual coffee date once a week.
- Serve others. Get involved with volunteer activities and help others who are isolated and need support. Serving others takes the focus off self.
- Practice good self-care. Be intentional with healthy nutrition, daily movement, and spiritual growth as part of your daily routine. You can get started with the LightHer Way Morning Checklist.
Finally, if you or someone you know struggles with loneliness, ask for help. We are not meant to fight this battle alone, friend. Talk with your pastor or a mental health professional for more guidance and support. And join our #battlebuddybrigade on the Sacred Grounds podcast. We’d love to hear from you and pray for your victory on the spiritual battleground of life.
Did you find this article helpful? Please share with someone who needs to be encouraged today.