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Britain Appoints Minister Of Loneliness To Combat Epidemic
Tips for Dealing With and Preventing Loneliness
Many times after the death of a loved one, a break up or divorce, or moving to a new town or city, it can be difficult to build a new social circle and to stay connected to the ones you already have. It can also be all too easy to get sucked into the daily routine of work and running errands and to lose touch with friends and family. This is how many people fall into the trap of loneliness and the health effects mentioned above can begin to take their toll over time.
It’s important to maintain a healthy social network wherever you live. First, you should recognize when it has become a problem. If you don’t feel like you have anyone you can confide in, or that you don’t have any deep friendships or connections with anyone, that’s when there is a problem. Even if you don’t necessarily feel lonely, the conditions are right for it to set in.
Begin by reaching out to family and old friends. Call them up on the phone, don’t text. Suggest meeting for a meal or a morning coffee. Make it a point to attend a family gathering or a friend’s birthday party, or some other social function you might normally opt out of. Making different decisions is the first step to adding fresh momentum to your life.
Making friendly chit chat with strangers as you go about your day is another great way to start building some positive social momentum. Say “Hi,” to your neighbor down the hall or next door. Ask the cashier how her day is going. Little interactions like this can give you a boost.
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Joining clubs and taking classes in things you are interested in is also great, because you will meet people who genuinely share your interests, and the chances of you developing a true friendship are much higher.
Just remember—social media and texting are not a substitute for a healthy social life. There is no replacement for hearing someone’s voice for real and face-to-face interaction with other people.