It is possible to overcome loneliness if you are determined to do so. Thinking about where this may be coming from and what you can do about it is very useful. Learning to be alone may be the first step because there will always be moments in life where we would need to be alone or might feel lonely. It is useful to learn how to feel relaxed in your own company as this can reduce feelings of panic. Techniques such as yoga, keeping a diary, or listening to relaxing music may be helpful. Learning to be with others is also very important. If you spend a lot of time alone because you feel uncomfortable in a social situation it is also useful to see how you can start taking small steps to practice being around people. Make the most of every opportunity for social contact, however slight it may be. You may find it easier to relate to others if you find a common ground. If there is something that you enjoy doing such as going for walks, sports, music or anything else really, ask around to see whether there are any groups which you would be able to join. If you have spare time on your hands, it would also be useful to think about whether you would like to volunteer for a good cause. There are many local organisations that would need volunteers to help them out in various roles. Finally, talking to a professional might also be useful if none of the above seem to be attainable. Through therapy, one may sometimes find the courage and strength to face and change a situation that the person feels defeated by.
Claire is a gestalt psychotherapist at Willingness. She works with adolescents and adults. She has a special interest in mental health. She can be contacted on firstname.lastname@example.org.