When loneliness becomes too much

Since Austria is back in lockdown, I feel like I’ve seen more posts and articles on the subject of loneliness. The requests to speak and the drawing of attention are definitely right. It is good and important to remember to call a friend, family member or acquaintance, neighbor or work colleague who may be feeling lonely. To write a lovely message. Say hello or have a cup of tea together. Just listen to our fellow human beings and spend time with them. Not forgetting these very simple human actions right now can turn a potentially lonely day into a joyful one for all of us. Even if it’s just a moment when the eyes light up. We are all here and now with similar external conditions and try to deal with the situation.


What can we do ourselves when the feeling of loneliness becomes very strong?


Another aspect is that we may have high expectations of how our life should be when it comes to loneliness. I was in counseling many years ago after a crisis situation in my life and in one session the topic came up that I was feeling lonely. I observed people around me who seemed to have been going on dates all the time, meeting friends, and being in contact with many others. I had built a very nice picture of how it should be and felt how big the difference was to my reality. I decorated every detail and thought about it a lot. The effect was that the problem got bigger and worse in my head. The more I got into it, the more I felt the loneliness and became more and more sad. My mind went into the drama and couldn’t get up from the sofa.


What I’m getting at is that we may put a lot of thoughts on top of an existing problem. Expectations, judgments, judgments, comparisons and pigeonholing. Our brains are used to doing this and are quickly at hand, just not very helpful in this case. All of this creates a storm of thoughts that hurts us and makes us sad, or a thick fog that lets us see nothing. The comforting thing is that every storm of thoughts passes, the fog clears and we can see more clearly again afterwards and feel calmer. We can always remember that the sun is shining over the fog. And so we may also think of what could help us feel lonely when we get out of the drama.


What help you when you feel lonely