16 Ways To Make Yourself Feel Less Lonely (That Have Nothing To Do With Other People)

Whether you’re by yourself in a brand new city, or going through a fresh breakup, or simply experiencing a rough patch with your friends, loneliness can be crushing, anxiety-inducing, and suffocating. And while it’s always best to lean on the people you love and trust most, there are also a ton of things you can do on your own to feel a little less isolated. So here are 16 ways you can take matters into your own hands when it comes to tackling your loneliness.


1. Surround your living space with things that make you feel comforted and safe – slippers, warm blankets, soft pillows, photos of your friends and family, your favorite color schemes, and whatever else it is that makes you feel a little more relaxed and calm in your own home.

2. Sign up for an exercise class, even just once to see what it’s like. If you’re not in the mood for intense cardio, try yoga. It’s a great way to get into a group mind and feel like you’re not alone, even when surrounded by total strangers.

3. Watch some good TED Talks. They’re a great way to feel inspired, comforted, and connected with the rest of humanity. Here is one of my all-time favorites, on the power of vulnerability.

4. Go sit in a cafe or a park or another popular place. Sometimes, being around the energies of other people – even if you don’t talk to them – can have a positive impact on your mood.

5. If you often opt for delivery, try doing takeout instead. It’s not a total problem solver, but it at least gets you up and out of your apartment for a brief amount of time.

6. Put together a list of movies you’ve always wanted to watch but never have, and then work your way through them one-by-one.

7. Do the same thing with books. Read every book that’s ever been on your to-read list, and marvel at how good it feels to finally take in the novels and memoirs you’ve always talked about exploring.

8. Invest in some good candles – long-lasting ones with the kinds of scents that remind you of home or of your favorite season or anything else that will make you happy.

9. Write, however you want to. You don’t have to think of it as a ‘journal’ or a ‘diary’ if you don’t want to. Just write your feelings down on a piece of paper, and if the thought of doing this is that abhorrent to you, promise yourself that you’ll rip it up right afterwards. Attempting to put your words down onto a tangible object can often help you come to conclusions about the way you’re feeling that you wouldn’t have otherwise realized.

10. Make your bed. It’s a small, easy, and quick task that still manages to give you a large sense of achievement and peace.

11. Go on a date with yourself. Treat yourself to a massage, a good meal, or a delicious glass of wine. Anything that will help you learn how to enjoy your own company.

12. Look through old photos of some of your favorite memories, to remind yourself that life really can be happy and joyful and that you are capable of getting there again, even if it doesn’t feel like that right now.

13. Go for a run. A short, easy, uplifting run.

14. And if that still seems like too big of a jump, go on a walk. The benefits cannot be emphasized enough.

15. Write down a list of things you’re thankful for every night before you go to sleep. It takes barely two minutes, but it’s such a simple way to remind yourself of all the good in your life right before you close your eyes for the day.

16. Be present in everything you do. Pay attention to the food you eat and how good it tastes, to the wine you drink and how pleasant the flavors are, to the movie you’re watching without simultaneously scrolling through your phone and missing all the important parts, to the walk you’re on and how beautiful your surroundings are. Put in the effort, one day at a time, to open your eyes to the life you’ve created for yourself. Because as they always say, if you blink, you really might miss it. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

About the author

Kim Quindlen

I’m a staff writer for Thought Catalog. I like comedy and improv. I live in Chicago. My Uber rating is just okay.

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