Has Loneliness Become A Problem?

Individual Counseling Insights brought to you by California Psychotherapeutic Resources, Inc.

It’s been over a year since governmental officials reacted to the pandemic by imposing lockdowns and encouraging many forms of social distancing. Most people cooperated and developed new patterns of work and social life. Combining work- and school-from-home routines with social activities such as Zoom happy hours, people coped. There was, however, a predictable side effect: loneliness. No matter how much people interacted online, the lack of actual physical interaction took its toll.

A woman alone reading

Some people suffered more than others. In an article for the HuffPost website, Stephanie Barnes cites expert opinion that “extroverts are more susceptible than introverts to the negative effects of loneliness because they are at greater risk of low moods when they are alone.”

Has loneliness become a larger problem for you as the pandemic has worn on? Barnes points out some indicators that you might watch for:

  • You’re feeling lonely around others
  • You’re feeling tired more frequently
  • You struggle to connect in ways that once came easily
  • You’re started exhibiting symptoms of depression
  • You’ve picked up negative coping habits
  • You’re dealing with suicidal ideation

Fortunately, there are straightforward ways of dealing with these issues. If you believe you have a serious problem, call a mental health professional. If you are looking to simply improve your state of mind, try:

  • Practicing direct communication
  • Curbing your social media consumption if it’s making you feel worse
  • Keeping in mind that you are not alone

For a more in-depth discussion of each of these points, see the entire article here.