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Loneliness your new normal? There is a routine to help with this

If you had any doubts that some people were deeply uncomfortable with being alone, this study found that some participants preferred to be electrocuted rather than with their own thoughts. Fortunately / unfortunately, this is currently not an option or a cure.

I am not a mental health expert, but I do know a little about being alone. I live with chronic pain that often makes me bedridden, has been single for a decade and has spent the first year of sobriety against alcohol in social isolation. Loneliness is my foundation.

And in the past few weeks I have answered questions from friends who urgently lack human contact and have been looking for ways to combat their newly discovered loneliness.

Before you make friends with a lifeless object to get it In this necessary time of isolation, try to keep to a regular schedule and your day at work (when you work from home), rest, exercise, meals and Share activities that bring joy and peace.

Rituals and routines can offer stability and give us strength.

Here is an overview of how I got along in my experience, and I hope this can help shape yours.

Start your day simply by opening a window and listening. Nature can have benefits that last all day. A study by the University of Stockholm showed that after psychological stress, physiological recovery is faster when exposed to pleasant natural sounds.

Notice the color changes in the sky and how birdsong speeds up or fades. Go back to the window as many times as possible throughout the day and enjoy feeling connected to something larger than the space you're limited to.

Every morning, write down three things that you are grateful for, no matter how small. If you have difficulty finding gratitude in your own life, write a letter to someone you love and tell them how much it means to you.

A study by Indiana University researchers found that writing gratitude letters “can unleash us from toxic emotions. "If you don't like sending the letter, simple writing may be enough to improve your mood.

Since listening to happy music has been shown to improve your mood, it's no coincidence that Spotify's most popular playlists are correct "Mood Booster" and "Happy Hits" are now included. Known songs are a link to life outside of Lockdown, so create some uplifting playlists to set your day to music and share with friends and family, or even consider sharing through FaceTime to create a playlist.

I love triggering happy, nostalgic memories with my favorite songs, and there is scientific evidence to show that nostalgia can strengthen your sense of belonging and togetherness and help to combat loneliness.

If human contact is out of the question, why not a meal over S Planning kype or zoom? The opportunity to chat with friends or family via video can be a pleasure on long, lonely days.

I spent a year not going out while finding my way around early sobriety and I wish I had been more open to online contacts. That would have saved me a lot of FOMO.

If you want to make contacts, take it seriously: Prepare yourself in front of your favorite drink and get dressed. You can either cook food before you chat, or try to cook a meal “together”.

If you're looking for an after party, join DJ D-Nice for Club Quarantine, where you can do a few steps like Oprah. Michelle Obama, Rihanna and Will Smith come over.

If you're not a bullet journal converter, there's never a better time to start. A diary has something incredibly soothing that gives structure and shape in a world where so many factors are beyond your control.

I used journaling to schedule a call to friends and write a list of the places I want to visit when the quarantine is over (somewhere other than in the kitchen and bathroom would be nice) and plan You some future goals.

Have a page with positive affirmations and read them to yourself every evening. Telling yourself that I am great / powerful / strong / resilient may seem strange, but the more you practice affirmations, the more likely you are to believe them.

Do you remember a time when you could only speak to other people on a phone before sending SMS and apps? (I am showing my age here!) To alleviate loneliness, encourage people to phone you. When they're busy or hate talking on the phone, send voice memos with anecdotes from your day.

My friends always know when I have a day of severe pain because I tend to call for a chat. Talking to someone I love makes me calm and connected, even when I'm in bed.

In addition to the inherent comfort of hearing a familiar voice, speaking to someone you know can even strengthen your brain function!

Expand your social circle online.

If loneliness strikes, try to expand your social circle in isolation. Whatever your passion in life, I can guarantee that there is an online community with people who share this enthusiasm, whether it is books, films, podcasts, crafts, art or food.

It's reassuring to know that so many of us are going through the same strange time together, and even if you will never meet your online friends IRL, when life becomes "normal" again, they can still play an important role play in your life.

Doing something meaningful for others

Doing something meaningful doesn't just alleviate the boredom that you may experience in isolation, it also gives you a sense of purpose and identity, even when the world has gone to shit. You don't have to be a medic to make a big impact in a crisis ̵

1; the American Red Cross is desperate for virtual volunteers and if you have some cash left over, you can donate to a food aid program.

If you are If you miss chatting with random strangers in cafes or restaurants, try QuarantineChat, an anonymous voice calling service that connects isolated people from all over the world. It's a bit like Chatroulette, but without the chance of unwanted nudity.

If you fight mentally without human interaction, remember that this isolation will not last forever. Your loneliness doesn't kill you; It saves lives.

Catherine Renton is a freelance radio, online and print journalist from the UK. If she doesn't write about sobriety, mental health and wellbeing, she tweets @rentswrites .

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