Coping with Holiday Loneliness: Tip 2

It may seem counterintuitive to suggest being alone as a strategy to cope with and overcome loneliness but getting comfortable with the idea of being alone can actually help in overcoming loneliness.  

Learning to enjoy your own company makes it easier to overcome those feelings of loneliness that people can sometimes experience when they’re not in a relationship, or they live far away from family, or they’ve just moved to a new city. In these instances, a perception of loneliness may be causing negative feelings, rather than the fact of actually being alone. 

People who know how to be alone are more likely to know the difference between loneliness, which is a subjective experience, versus being alone, which is an objective experience. It becomes easier to accept that “loneliness is not necessarily about being alone,” and as a result, easier to find strategies that work in overcoming these feelings (Tiwari, 2013). 

Some ways to practice being alone can include having your own movie night, taking a live virtual exercise class by yourself, or tuning into your artistic side and painting, reading, or learning to play an instrument. If all else fails, just being alone mindfully is a good skill that is always worth practicing. 

Watch the HRI program on Coping with Loneliness for more strategies to overcome loneliness. 

Source: Tiwari S. C. (2013). Loneliness: A disease?. Indian journal of psychiatry, 55(4), 320–322.. https://doi.org/10.4103/0019-5545.120536