How to Reconnect When You’re Lonely

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Taste For Life proudly hosts blogs from some of the top nutritionists and life coaches in the country. Opinions expressed by the author are their own, and do not necessarily represent those of Taste For Life or its editorial staff. For questions about this blog or its content, please contact Edy Nathan.

When babies fail to thrive it’s often because they haven’t been touched, spoken to, or noticed. In a time when there’s so much social media, it’s amazing to see how lonely and unconnected many folks feel. No matter how old you are, from elders to youngsters, there is a hunger, a noticeable craving for connection.

Connection. Person to person, heart to heart, feeling another person’s charisma or energy or admiration or angst. This is all part of connection.

Social Media & Connectedness

Funny that we have a social media platform, LinkedIn, that’s all about connection and relatedness, yet it links us within business, it links our platforms, but does it link us, does it help us to relate to one another, does it help us relate outside of business?

What it does do is feed our egos, especially if we have lots of connections on that platform. Facebook was supposed to connect, and it did, to some extent, re-establish the long lost high school friend, or the college friend who you’d lost touch with, and yet, it became a place where people looked happy, involved, and connected, when in fact, so many folks falsified how good things were, and the fun and connection they seemed to have was really absent.

Put it up, put it on, and what happens when the mask comes off? And really, if you’re recording all the fun you’re having, how much fun are you having? Connected to the reaction of others, rather than really connecting. When we’re behind our phones, when we’re on the other side, we’re not really present.

Loneliness & Connection

In a 2018, New York Times article, the topic of loneliness was discussed as an issue in the workplace, at home and is taken with such seriousness, that the U.K. has appointed a minister of loneliness. Perhaps they need to appoint a minister of connection.

It’s not just social media that leaves one feeling the lack of connection. The aloneness factor happens in grief, when you’ve lost a loved one, throughout the aging process, or when you’ve lost a sense of curiosity, of culture, ritual, and of family. What happens to our bodies, and our minds and our souls while facing this dilemma? Health issues, mental stress and even dementia, are part of the effects of a lack of connection.

Isolation & Getting Reconnected

The effect of isolation and loneliness on the body, the  mind and the soul are undeniable. And guess what? It’s reversible in small, little, incremental steps. And you have the power to find your warrior when it comes to getting connected.

Here are two ways to get reconnected:

  1. Friendship. So important to tackling the need for connection. Reach out to a friend you haven’t spoken to in a while, take a walk, share a book you’ve read, or share stories. We know that story telling allows for intimacy, and reminds everyone of where they’ve been, the people they’ve loved or liked or even disliked.
  2. Exercise. Yes, regardless of small town living or big city living, there are ways to find people who exercise together. In China, you’ll see hundreds of folks doing Tai chi on a big lawn. Tai chi is one of those universal exercises that can reduce stress, help you find others who want to be in touch with their bodies and there is really something to universal energy.

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About Edy Nathan

Edy Nathan, MA, LCSW is a licensed psychotherapist and certified sex therapist with over 20 years of experience in the field of grief and trauma. She is a certified EMDR practitioner, regression therapist, and certified hypnotherapist. Her formal training as a psychotherapist integrates with her views on trauma, abuse, and death. Her book, It's Grief: The Dance of Self-Discovery through Trauma and Loss was released in July 2018. Visit her website for more information.