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Dr. Steve Frisch, Psy.D. is a clinical psychologist in private practice in
Chicago, Illinois and Northfield, Illinois.

You can contact Dr. Frisch, Psy.D. at
(847) 498-5611.


How to Overcome Loneliness
by Dr. Steve Frisch, Psy.D.

There’s no magic pill that I know of to alleviate the pain and suffering caused by loneliness. And even if there were such a pill, as a clinical psychologist, I could not prescribe such a pill. However, there are three things that I can and do prescribe to each and every one of my clients who experience the pain and suffering that comes from feeling lonely.

The first thing I prescribe to my clients is to get involved with people. You have to step out of your isolation and find a way to get connected to the human race. There’s nothing more healing to the soul than to experience the love and the support you can only get from being involved with other human beings.  We all need to feel like we have a place in this world, that we matter to another living soul, that we hold some importance to somebody else.

The second thing I prescribe to my clients is to get involved with people. You need to be able to step out of your own problems, out of your own pain, and contribute to somebody else’s life. Involvement with other people, providing emotional nutrition for somebody else is a magical elixir for your own frozen soul. When you isolate and disconnect from the world, you feel empty as your life is void of meaningful contact with others. Feeling alienated from the rest of the world drains your spirit of hope and purpose, the thought that your life matters. The act of giving to others, the act of transcending your own constricted world, plants the seeds of hope and purpose in your own life.

And the third thing I prescribe to my clients is to get involved with people. You need to be involved with people who are emotionally safe—people who can be supportive, who can be there for you. Emotionally safe relationships are an important catalyst for your own personal growth. They provide the necessary contact you need with others to get out of yourself. People who are emotionally safe to be with provide an outlet for you to step out of your woundedness and experiment with how you live your life.

That’s the essence of overcoming loneliness, not medicating it with alcohol and other drugs, not ignoring it by losing yourself in work or some other all consuming endeavor, not denying it by learning how to put on a happy face, but by getting involved with people. By getting involved with other people you will enable yourself to experience feeling plugged into the love and support of others who are invested rather than threatened by your growth and development.

The only way I know of to put an end to the pain that you experience from feeling isolated and alone is to get involved with the human race. And the only way I know of to get involved with the human race is to take action. To get more involved with people requires of you to be more proactive and less passive. So it’s up to you. Let’s get busy and create a plan of action that will enable you to slowly but surely get [re]connected to the human race. Here are some suggestions for you to consider. See if you can construct a plan of action that you can begin tomorrow and take the next thirty days to execute. Wait and see what a difference this will make to your emotional and spiritual well-being.

Bridge Builder’s Checklist

1.) Improve the relationship your have with yourself. When you don’t like yourself, it’s hard to believe that others like you. One very simple thing to do to change the relationship you have with yourself is to change the negative thoughts you have about yourself to positive ones.

2.) Join a support group. Support groups are a good place to meet people and make new friends. Support groups are a good, safe way to meet other people who have similar concerns and interests as you do. Sharing common concerns or interests is a great ice breaker.

3.) Attend meetings, lectures, and other activities that interest you. Again, this is an opportunity to meet people who share similar interests as you do. And the more you get out, the more you will see and be seen by other people.   

4.) Volunteer work is a good way to get involved with a cause that you care about. Not only will you be involved with other people, you’re life will begin to feel more meaningful by getting out of your self-centered isolation.

5.) Have you ever wondered what happened to ole so and so, your buddy from way back when? There are many good opportunities these days with the internet, and e-mail, and Instant Message to hook-up with just about anybody who is still alive. Rekindling old friendships is a wonderful way to [re]connect with the human race.

6.) Make sure that the relationships you do have are based on giving and receiving—not just giving. There isn’t a lonelier feeling in the world than to be involved in friendships in which you do all the giving without doing any of the receiving. If you are one of those people who give and give and give with the silent hope that you’ll get back in return then it’s likely that you may feel lonelier than the Maytag repairman.

7.) Hire a therapist to help you better understand the fears you have about getting more involved with other people. A therapist can help you work through the fears you have and help you develop coping skills to deal with those fears. A therapist can help you learn new relationship skills that will enable you to feel more confident in your dealings with others, assertiveness skills that will empower you to get your needs met in your relationships, and conflict resolution skills to work through the inevitable issues that arise between you and the people in your life.

For more information about how to build great relationships, read Dr. Frisch’s, Psy.D. free online books, Building Better Bridges: Creating Great Relationships With the People Who Matter Most and Making Molehills Out of Mountains.

G.B.U.

Steve

G.B.U.

Steve



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Enrich Recovery
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Reclaim Your Life
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Love and Be Loved
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Enrich Recovery
Reclaim Your Life
Liberate Your Soul
Stop Self-Sabotage
Develop Your Spirit