There are few things in life more painful than feeling completely alone. You wonder why you were singled out for a life of abject misery that even the people who love you most could never understand.
Despite how grim things feel, here are some things to remind yourself that can help you keep your head up until you start to feel ok again:
1. Someone else has gone through this too.
Even though we’re all different, we still go through many of the same experiences.
With 7.125 billion people in the world today, chances are good that at least a few of them have gone through exactly what you’re dealing with.
Go find some of them; that’s what the internet, movies, and books are for. Even if you’re reading about a purely fictional character, it still feels nice to know that your experience isn't that unique.
2. At the very least, someone can always imagine and empathize.
For the sake of argument, let’s say it’s inconceivable that anyone else has gone through what you’re going through. You’ve just met an alien and he proposed.
First of all, congratulations. Secondly, there's always someone you can talk to, whether it's friend or an anonymous person in a forum. Expressing your feelings is key if you want to stop feeling alone.
3. Search beneath your feelings for hidden lessons.
I once heard that every feeling is just an invitation to explore yourself and figure out the lesson hidden underneath. That makes a lot of sense to me.
It’s important for your overall development that you really think about why you feel alone, how you got there, and what you want to change in the future.
A lot of the time, negative feelings are signals that we need to be doing things differently.
4. Accept how you feel.
When we feel alone, it’s partly because we’re splitting off from ourselves. We’re basically saying "it’s not okay that I feel this way. I wish I felt differently."
When you do that, you feel even more alone because now you’re not even on your own team. Instead, try to start at a place of acceptance and go over some reasons why you may be feeling that way.
5. Don't be so hard on yourself.
It’s amazing how much we beat ourselves up without even being fully aware of it. We go over a situation, again and again, wondering what we could have done differently until we drive ourselves nearly insane.
If we knew the outcomes of our actions ahead of time, then, of course, we wouldn’t make as many mistakes. But making those mistakes is what teaches us lessons.
Although messing up is rarely fun, it can be a valuable experience for us and everyone, yes everyone, does it.
6. There are always furry friends.
Cats, dogs, rabbits, really any little fluffy guy who will sit and listen as you ugly cry is truly a gift.
Your pets really do pick up on your moods and, despite their standoffishness, they love you. So, hang out with them! They don’t feel alone because they have you, so take comfort in knowing you have them too.
7. Nobody else's life is perfect, either.
Don’t use social media as your barometer for how everyone’s doing in life. Social media is a stage more than anything else - everyone is putting on the best show they’ve got.
Have you ever noticed the people who are on social media all day long? How much could they really have going on other than obsessive picture prepping? Don’t pay them any mind.
8. It’s okay to talk to yourself.
Funnily enough, talking to yourself can make you feel less alone. I don’t mean out loud, though that would be fine too, I mean journaling.
There are so many ways to journal now and sometimes when you’re all twisted up in a knot, putting pen to paper (or text to Word document) can really help you straighten things out.
9. Remember how far you've come in a year.
Sure, you feel alone right now, but that’s just one drop in a vast sea of feelings and experiences. Look at how much your life has already changed this year and remind yourself that this feeling is truly temporary.
10. Music can change everything.
As William Congreve once said, "Music has charms to soothe the savage beast." Even the saddest music can make the world make sense.
Putting a soundtrack that perfectly underscores your mood will make you feel anything but alone since it’s designed to speak directly to your soul.
These feelings of loneliness can pull you down, but they won't last forever. Life can change in an instant and one day, you'll find someone who'll prove to you that you aren't alone after all.