14th February 2017 is not just any day in the calendar, it’s the ULTIMATE day of love. Or so they say…
For some of you reading this post, Valentines Day is just another day in the calendar, where society is able to judge your current situation. On this day in particular, your situation may be judged inferior purely by comparison as to whether you are happy and in a relationship or not; but being alone this V Day is not the same as being lonely. If you are comfortable and happy, there is nothing wrong with being on your own.
Loneliness however, describes an emotional response to one’s circumstances, and can occur regardless of whether you’re in a relationship or not. Whilst feeling lonely isn’t itself a mental health problem, the two are strongly linked.
Feeling lonely can have a negative impact on your mental health, and having a mental health problem, increases your liklihood of feeling lonely. But, please don’t think that once you have an inkling of either of these, the other is just around the corner – far from it.
Whether it’s just for today, or more often than not, if you feel isolated and disconnected, check out the recommended tips as a starting point for emerging from your sense of loneliness:
Make new connections
Lack of social contact is a trigger for loneliness. Most people need to be surrounded by some form of friendship group to maintain good mental health. Everyone has different social needs however – you may be someone who needs to be a part of a large group of friends or you may be content with just a few close friends. Either way, the simplist way to reduce feelings of lonliness, is to try and meet new people. Remember, if you’ve been feeling for a while, take it slow. You don’t have to start by striking up new conversations, just head to a local cafe and sit amongst others.
Another leading cause of loneliness is a lack of intimate relationships. You may know many people or be surrounded by many friends and family members; but if you’re relationship feels superficial and only surface deep, you miss out on the connection that is gained through the sharing of emotions.
Stop comparing yourself to others
It is very hard to stop comparing ourselves to others, we all do it, especially on V day, but remember: things are not always what they seem from the outside. With the help of social media, individuals portray the life that they both want you to see, and that they want to see. Maintain your feelings of self worth and turn off your Instagram/Facebook accounts.
Live today (and every other day) in the moment.