How to Deal With Being Single and Feeling Lonely

Three Parts:Building Alternative RelationshipsFocusing on YourselfEmbracing the Present and Looking Ahead to the Future

Are you single, tired, and fed up of seeing happy, in love couples kissing in parks and walking through the city arm in arm? Do you feel lonely that everyone else in your social group has a boyfriend or a girlfriend? It can be a hard being single, but it doesn't have to be all that bad! Read on to learn how you can discover the good parts of being single and overcome any feelings of loneliness.

Part 1
Building Alternative Relationships

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    Spend time with family and friends. A romantic partnership is not the only satisfying type of relationship. In fact, being single is the perfect time to focus on building other vital types of relationships that can last a lifetime.
    • If you are feeling lonely, tell your family and closest friends. It might be hard to admit at first, but the first step to overcoming loneliness is to admit to ourselves that we are lonely, and to let those who care about us know so that can help.[1]
    • Talking on the phone or connecting through social media is good, but try to also meet up outside of the house as well. Sometimes a change of environment can really help to elevate one's mood and create the feeling of positive, forward movement.[2]
    • Offer to help babysit or petsit for your friends and family as a way to stay connected and have fun with their kids and pets!
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    Get out more. Sitting alone in a dark room with the curtains closed will do nothing for your confidence and will make you feel more pessimistic.
    • Check out new shops and restaurants in your town and get to know the owners.
    • If you work a lot from home, consider taking your work out to a coffee shop to work in the presence of others.[3]
    • Become friendly with your next-door neighbors. You can always invite them over for afternoon tea or a weekend barbecue when you feel like company.
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    Join new social groups. These kinds of platonic gatherings can be great spaces to meet likeminded people and share interests.[4]
    • See if there’s a book club through your local library or coffee house.
    • If you’re passionate about a particular set of issues or social causes, do some internet searching to see if there are any clubs or organizations in your area that focus on the same causes.
    • If you’re religious, consider joining a church group and taking up meditation.
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    Become a volunteer. Not only will this help to fill up your “lonely time,” but volunteering can make you feel good about yourself as a person and has been clinically shown to improve one’s mood.[5]
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    Get a pet. Furry companions can be the best of friends and keep one from feeling lonely at home.[6]
    • Pets offer unconditional love and will always be there at home to greet you instead of an empty house.
    • Studies have shown that having pets can lower blood pressure and elevate mood.[7]

Part 2
Focusing on Yourself

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    Build your self-confidence. Being in a relationship does not make you a better, more successful person. Don't think less of yourself for being single. Rather, this is the time to focus on all the things that make you great, as well as all some little things to make yourself even better.[8]
    • Treat yourself to some new clothes or a new haircut. This can help you feel better about yourself physically, and like you’re making a fresh start.[9]
    • Focus on your career, work, and professional life. Achieving success in this area of your life can help you feel better about yourself overall.
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    Enjoy “you” time. Being on your own provides “restorative solitude,” which means time to think, refresh, and replenish your creative juices before reentering the world as a more fulfilled and fruitful person.[10]
    • Treat yourself to a movie, play, or concert. These don’t only have to be “date” activities, rather something that you can enjoy all on your own.
    • Get to know your inner self better with some personal meditation time, or connect to a higher power through prayer.[11]
    • Try writing, journaling, or keeping a diary. Studies have shown that writing can be a cathartic way to work through emotions like loneliness, confront your fears, and be mindful of what you're currently happy about as well as what you want for the future.[12][13]
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    Get active and exercise. If you are feeling lonely or depressed, taking up a new sport or form of exercise can really help. This is great for your body, as well as your soul.[14]
    • Running and swimming are great for relieving stress and depression. They release a lot of endorphins, the neurochemicals responsible for making us feel happy and less stressed.[15]
    • Take long walks in nature. The woods or the beach can be especially relaxing environments and the beauty of nature helps to remind one of the good things in life.
    • Jog along public trails. You might make a new running buddy who also frequents your favorite route.
    • Take up yoga. Yoga is a fantastic practice for body and soul. It helps to reduce stress while building flexibility and strength, and you can practice it alone or in a studio setting surrounded by others.
    • Try joining a gym. Becoming a gym member not only provides great motivation for staying active, but it is also a social environment where you can meet people.
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    Learn a new skill or hobby. Learning something new can be a rewarding experience and help you cultivate new interests.
    • Solo hobbies like cooking, gardening, or crafting can also be turned into social activities by joining a group class on these topics.[16]
    • Keep your mind busy with a good book. Try to find something engaging, informative, or inspirational rather than depressive.[17]
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    Make your environment happy. Our surroundings can have a big influence on our moods and with a few simple changes you can create a happy, vibrant space that can help combat the lonely blues.[18]
    • Surround yourself with bright colors. Give your room a fresh coat of pain in a bright happy color, like sunny yellow or minty green. Try to add some color into your wardrobe, too. If you dress happy, you just might feel happier![19]
    • Get some flowers or plants to cheer-up your house. Caring for living plants can be a great hobby and add instant "life" to your home. You can also treat yourself to some fresh cut flowers, especially those that are connected to specific emotions (for example: yellow carnations are thought to symbolize cheerfulness).[20]
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    Go on a trip. Traveling on your own to a place you’ve always wanted to visit can be exciting. Best of all, you don’t have to negotiate another person and their quirks -- like wanting to stop at an attraction you don’t care for, or not wanting to fly.[21]

Part 3
Embracing the Present and Looking Ahead to the Future

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    Live in the Moment. Studies have shown that mindful living, or focusing on the present moment, can help you overcome loneliness and find more self-satisfaction.[22]
    • Focus on the present moment and leave the past to the past so that you can enjoy where you are, and who you are, in life right now.[23]
    • Don't hold on to past relationships or "failures." Accept the fact that you can't change the past. Instead, you have the opportunity to move ahead into a new, better phase of life.
    • Slow down and take your time doing daily activities. Smell the roses, both literally and figuratively![24]
    • Don't worry about the future. Have hopes, dreams, and aspirations, but don't let your thoughts of the future turn into negative fears or worries that detract from your present day.[25]
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    Try not to idealize relationships. Being in a relationship with someone isn't easy, and sometimes people in couples can be even lonelier than singletons.[26]
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    Think about your standards. During your solo time, think about what you want from your friends, family, and other relationships in the future.
    • Think about the qualities or attributes that you enjoy in another person and that enrich your life. It’s okay to have high standards for your next relationship!
    • Don’t rule out being open to something new, though, and consider going for someone who you wouldn't usually go for when the time feels right.
    • Remember that it’s way better to be happy and single than in a bad relationship.
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    Don't go searching for someone new right away. The right person will come into your life when you are least expecting it but are most ready for it. Enjoy your daily life with yourself now rather than focusing on finding someone immediately.
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    Stay positive. Be happy and content within yourself and never think that you are not worthy because you are not in a relationship, or that you're a "loser" for feeling lonely. Neither of these are true! Instead, remind yourself to look on the bright side of life, and that there's a lot of good things to be gained in moments of singleness and solitude.


  • Remember, just because you're "alone" doesn't mean you have to see yourself as lonely.
  • Socialize with friends that are good for you, not someone who will bring you down
  • Love yourself! You need to be confident without someone to stabilize you!
  • Be proud of who you are, because everyone is beautiful in their own special way.
  • Accept yourself for who you are and know you are just as good without a significant other.
  • Don't dwell on the past, live in the now.


  • If you find yourself feeling very depressed and can't seem to shake out of it, you might need to seek some help. Don't be afraid to get in touch with your doctor or ask them to recommend someone for you to talk to.

Sources and Citations

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Categories: Single Life