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The 3 Factors to Overcome Loneliness According To Studies

factors to overcome loneliness according to studies

The Little-Known Secret to Overcoming Loneliness
by Donald Altman, M.A., LPC
Copyright by Donald Altman

Has the pandemic changed your sense of aloneness? Do you feel more lonely and isolated than you did a year ago? If you work remotely, how has this taken away some of the person-to-person and face-to-face support you experienced previously? How have the opportunities to be with others, even with people you might not know, been decreased or shrunk down in size?

As we’re approaching the year anniversary of the pandemic, it’s time to take stock of your relationship health and connections with others. In my own case, for example, my wife and I have already discussed how to adapt the upcoming holiday season with family in a way that we can still experience it, yet keep everyone stay safe. (It’s an ongoing discussion, I might add.)
All of this adds up to one thing: We’re all probably more lonely than we were a year ago and are trying to find ways to cope.

Given the limitations of health mandates, what can we do to turn the tide on loneliness?

3 Factors to Overcome Loneliness According To Studies
The 3 Factors to Overcome Loneliness According To Studies

Fortunately, there are actions you can take to step out of the grey shadows of loneliness and into the bright and brilliant colors of togetherness.

First, there’s some new research that shows that examined some strategies for overcoming loneliness. The study identified several personal and environmental factors that were associated with feeling isolated from others. I found that this study relevant because it looked at how various types of loss affected individuals. While the study looked at age-related loss, we are all experiencing similar pandemic-related losses–from loss of time with friends to loss of life purpose.

The 3 Factors to Overcome Loneliness According To Studies
The 3 Factors to Overcome Loneliness According To Studies

Related: 10 Relatable Truths No One Talks About Being Single and Lonely

Three Factors To Overcome Loneliness

1) Connect with people from your past, or family members you may not have seen in a long time. Call them, or set up a remote call. Avoid just texting or putting up social media pictures. You need to make a real connection, and if possible, repeat your connections with others on a weekly basis.

2) The second factor is about engaging your purpose. What gets your engine revving? In other words, what can you share with others? One of the best prescriptions for moving forward from loneliness is to help another person—especially someone you know is isolated or lonely. Share a funny story, or just let them know you are there to help.

3) Assuming an attitude of acceptance in regard to the current pandemic situation can go a long way to helping you cope with it. Acceptance doesn’t change or control the situation, but it can help you outlast it. Acceptance can also help you develop wisdom and compassion, two ways of staying calm and caring in the face of the pandemic storm.

Finally, don’t give up trying. Bring your mindful presence to all that you do. Let the smallest engagements bring understanding, kindness, love, and acceptance. This way you can reduce loneliness in others as well.

Related: 11 Simple Ways To Feel Less Lonely In Life

Don’t give up! You may have a relationship, but can still feel lonely. Using the three factors to overcome loneliness, you will be able cope with feelings of isolation and aloneness. Let us know what you think about this in the comments section below!


Written by: Donald Altman, M.A., LPC
Originally appeared on: Psychology Today

Republished with permission
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The 3 Factors to Overcome Loneliness According To Studies

Donald Altman, M.A., LPC

Donald Altman, M.A., LPC, is a psychotherapist, international mindfulness expert, and award-winning author of over 20 books translated worldwide. Featured as an expert in The Mindfulness Movie and profiled in the Living Spiritual Teachers Project, he currently writes Psychology Today’s Practical Mindfulness Blog. His best-selling The Mindfulness Toolbox won two national publishing Ben Franklin IPBA awards as the best book in both the Psychology and Mind-Body-Spirit categories. His books, Clearing Emotional Clutter and The Mindfulness Code were both chosen as “One of the Best Spiritual Books of the Year” by Spirituality & Practice. Other popular books include 101 Mindful Ways to Build Resilience, Simply Mindful, One Minute Mindfulness, Reflect, and The Mindfulness Toolbox for Relationships. Past Vice-President of The Center for Mindful Eating, he has taught mindfulness to over 15,000 health care and business professionals. His newest book is Travelers, a novel about a grieving psychiatrist who finds hope, healing, and renewal when a mysterious traveling pet therapist, a sentient canine, and the suicidal young patient come to the psych ward. (To be released Aug. 2022)View Author posts