10 Tips to cope with loneliness after your breakup
May 12, 2022
Going through my divorce was the loneliest time in my life - even though I had great friends and family for support.
I'd met my husband at University and we lived together after that - so I'd never actually lived on my own before.
I didn't have any single friends so I spent most of my weekends either alone or with friends that we'd had as a couple - which just made the loss even more prominent - and I'd cry all the way home after seeing them.
I kept myself busy during the week working, seeing friends or going to the gym which helped to pass the time so I didn't have time to think about being alone.
But even though I had some amazing times when I was surrounded by a group of friends, I would have moments of extreme loneliness where I just felt so alone in the world.
There was only one person I wanted to be with but that had been taken away from me.
It's so true what they say that you can be surrounded by people but still feel so alone.
Gradually I started to make new friends that happened to be single and shared the same interests as me and over time the loneliness started to ease.
If you're feeling lonely after your breakup it's normal and I know how tough it is, especially when you've been together for a long time.
We're social beings and we need to feel connected to people and to have a sense of belonging.
Be kind to yourself during this time. It won’t always be like this.
Here are 10 Tips that can help you to ease the loneliness during your breakup:
- EXERCISE AND GET OUT IN NATURE - Exercise and moving your body is so important as it releases all the endorphins which help to make you feel good. It doesn’t have to be anything too strenuous, but getting outside if you can, really helps as well. Getting the sun on your face can trigger your body to produce endorphins and serotonin which have positive effects on how you feel. Make sure it's an activity that you enjoy and think about doing a group activity or enlisting an exercise buddy. Concentrating on the exercise and getting in flow can help you stop feeling lonely.
- VOLUNTEER - Volunteering for a local charity is not only a great way of meeting new people and helping to combat loneliness, but it also allows us to practice kindness which releases the hormone oxytocin, which helps you feel warm and connected to others. It can help to give you a passion and purpose back in your life which is so important for your wellbeing.
- TAKE UP A NEW HOBBY - Joining a new class or club can be a great way of meeting new people and it automatically exposes you to a group of people who have a shared interest with you which makes it easier.
- ADOPT A PET - Pets, especially cats and dogs provide unconditional love which can really help when you're feeling lonely. There’s no doubt my cats helped me to get through my divorce. Dog walking is a great way of meeting people and if it's not practical to have one yourself try some of the sites like www.borrowmydoggy where you can 'borrow' a dog to take it for a walk.
- STRENGTHEN EXISTING RELATIONSHIPS - It can be difficult to reach out to people when you're feeling lonely. It’s tempting to just want to curl up on the sofa with Netflix but start by taking small steps. Think about one person who you love to spend time with and who lights you up and reach out to them. You'll feel so much better by taking some of your control back. Try and plan in at least one in person social activity each week.
- TAKE A BREAK FROM SOCIAL MEDIA – Constantly being on social media can make you feel even more lonely and suffer from FOMO whilst you compare your life to everyone’s highlight reel. Remember that people only show you what they want you to see on social media. Studies have shown that there is a connection between social media use and feelings of loneliness and depression. Invest your time and energy in people and activities in real life instead.
- GET OUT OF YOUR COMFORT ZONE – For things to change in your life you have to do something different. I know how difficult it can be to push yourself when you’re struggling emotionally but try setting yourself some small goals. When you go for a walk, start smiling and saying hello to strangers, try starting up a conversation with the person next to you in the coffee queue. All this helps you to feel more connected to people and who knows what will come from it.
- PRACTICE SELF-CARE – and be kind to yourself. This is more important than ever when you’re feeling low. Make sure you get good quality sleep, eat healthily and exercise regularly. Show yourself compassion and watch the negative self-talk – talk to yourself in a way that’s kind, caring and compassionate. Try not to get in the habit of drinking alcohol when you’re on your own. If you can afford it, treat yourself to a spa treatment like a massage or facial where human touch is involved.
- PAY ATTENTION TO WHAT TRIGGERS YOUR LONELINESS – start noticing what things, or even people, make you feel lonely and what makes you feel connected and like you belong. It’s only once you bring this to your awareness that you can start doing something about it. Start filling your time with those activities which make you feel connected with people. Spending all your time alone with no social interaction is only going to make your loneliness worse.
- SEEK PROFESSIONAL HELP – If you’re going through a breakup and struggling emotionally, a breakup and divorce coach can give you the support you need to help you move on with your life so that you can become happier and stronger again.
If you’re going through a breakup and need some support you can send me an email to arrange a free no obligation chat at [email protected]