24Dec
2014
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Young woman with a cocktail.

Coping With Loneliness

Loneliness is a complex problem that we all deal with at some point in our lives. A 2013 Time Magazine study found that social isolation “may have a greater effect on risk of early death, especially among the elderly.” Loneliness manifests itself in many different ways, such as the loneliness felt by coping with the loss of a loved one or experiencing temporary loneliness from traveling on a business trip. There is no simple cure or treatment for dealing with loneliness; the solution depends on the specific type of loneliness and the individual.

 

Frequency of Lonely Feelings

 

The frequency with which an individual feels lonely is an important factor in determining the type of loneliness. For example, there are some people who rarely feel lonely. The loneliness experienced by these people often occurs because of some immediate situational factor, such as the loss of a close friend or something as simple as a rainy day. This type of loneliness is called state loneliness because it is triggered by the state or situation a person is in.

 

Types of Loneliness

 

Just as there are some people who rarely feel lonely, there are also those who feel a persistent loneliness regardless of the situation they are in. This is called trait loneliness, because it appears to be more like a personality trait than a reaction to situational factors.

 

It is important to understand the different types of loneliness because they are treated in different ways. State lonely people are able to be much more proactive in their approach to combating their loneliness. By focusing on the cause of their loneliness, they are able to address it with active coping strategies, such as working on a hobby or going to the gym.

 

Working to Overcome Loneliness

According to One Reverse Mortgage, ways to avoid loneliness are to move closer to family and friends, attend church, become a pet parent, and link up on social media.

 

Those who seek to solve loneliness with a significant other often have trouble doing so for a variety of reasons, such as a lack social skills or anxiety, while others may have already lost a spouse and are unwilling to remarry. Another aspect of this type of loneliness is being afraid to let one’s guard down. Whether it’s due to a past heartbreak or deep-rooted insecurities, some people have trouble allowing themselves to fully commit to a relationship. It is important to know that you must open yourself up to the possibility of being hurt to be in a relationship and to ultimately cure your loneliness.