Loneliness can be a debilitating condition. Fortunately there’s lot we can do about it. This is not about being alone by choice. One can be alone yet not be lonely. This is about that condition that takes place when a way of living disappears. For women over sixty, being alone is a greater possibility than it was in our earlier years.
One of the greatest fears after a divorce, death of a mate, or children leaving home, is the fear of always being alone. It’s understandable that one can feel lost and isolated. Fortunately, there’s a lot we can do about that. What can hold us up is living in the past and looking at the future as a bleak, empty space with no relief in sight.
Here’s something that worked for me at a time when I felt extremely at a loss as I found myself alone. At that time I had my own business and used the problem/decision/results method to come up with creative solutions when I worked with a client. So one night, restless and extremely lonely, I thought about trying this method to solve my problem. If you’re feeling lonely, (different from being alone) Here’s what I did and how you can take steps to change that situation.
First, I wrote down the problem: I’m feeling isolated, frustrated, lonely and angry.
Second, I wrote down the truth about why I wanted to change: I don’t like this feeling. It’s making me sad and depressed.
Third: I made the decision to change this situation.
Fourth: I wrote down my desired results; i.e., I want an exciting, fulfilling life full of fun and friends and I want to do things I have not been able to do before.
Once I knew what I wanted, I did some solitary brainstorming by starting with a checklist of twenty-five things for each of the categories. For example:
25 things I can do to do create a social network with supportive people.
25 things I can do that will make my life fulfilling.
25 things I have not been able to do before and that I would now like to do.
I’ll have to admit that a list of twenty-five things can be daunting; however, it changed my life. Some of the friendships I formed back then are richer now and as we have all become senior women, we can laugh at the many adventures we have since shared.
If you’re in that spot, and I hope you’re not, following these steps may give you a new perspective and create a whole new world of love and support.