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06/10/2020

5 Unique Places To Find Friends When You Have None & How Loneliness Affects Your Mental Health (Free Printables)

5 Unique Places To Find Friends When You Have None

Being lonely is one of the most universal and isolating emotions in the world. But you don’t have to feel this way. In this post, I’m going to show you that you are desperately needed and loved. 
I saw a heartbreaking video yesterday.

It was of an English woman who would go to the grocery store just so she could talk to the cashier.

She said that If she didn’t do that she said she could literally go months without talking to another person. What’s even sadder is that she’s not alone.

Loneliness is at an epidemic level. In the UK, an estimated 9 million people are as lonely as this woman.

If you’re someone who deals with loneliness & anxiety, I have a free guide on how to build an anti-anxiety toolkit to carry with you at all times and it also talks about a resource that has helped me greatly with my anxiety.

 

Just click the link below all the mental health resources in the library!

Click Here To Access The Healthy Mind Mental Health Resource Library 

 

Why Is Loneliness Such An Epidemic?

There are quite a few reasons why loneliness is such a huge problem in modern society:

1) Not wanting to express your loneliness so you suffer in silence

Loneliness is kind of this unspoken emotion that many people experience but is not usually talked about. People feel uncomfortable expressing how lonely they feel because it makes you feel like a loser.

That’s not true of course!

Loneliness is a perfectly natural human emotion but in this day of social media and people posting their pictures with their friends and their “perfect” lives, you seem ridiculous saying that you feel left.

God created us to be in community but even still, we feel awkward saying that we wish we were part of a community.

Crazy right! I get it of course. I think it might have something to do with the image of seeming like a social outcast but just let that image go, my friend.

Later in the post, I’m going to show you some places you can go that would love to see your beautiful face!

 

2) More people live alone

For example, the average household size in the U.S. has declined in the past decade, leading to a 10 percent increase in people living alone. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, over a quarter of the U.S. population — and 28 percent of older adults — now live by themselves.” Source

3) Loss of Community In General

Remember those stories from your grandma when she talked about everyone in the town knowing each other?

How everyone looked out for each other? The principals and the teachers knew the students and the students’ families and vice versa.

You knew all of your neighbors’ names, first and last? Of course, there are still communities like this, thank goodness, but they are anomalies. 

People also used to be far more involved in civic and charity organizations. Now these organizations struggle to find new members. This might be due to the long hours that people work.

Regardless of the reason, all of these factors make of more disconnected than we’ve ever been.

4) Fewer people go to church and even if they do they still may not feel connected

Less and less people attend church compared to previous generations. This is of course another massive reason why people feel so disconnected. Fewer people go to church.

Yes, you have the mega-churches but overall, church attendance has dropped significantly. And even for those who do attend church, loneliness doesn’t necessarily escape them either. 

 

How Loneliness Affects Your Health

According to Julianne Holt-Lunstad, PhD:

“Lack of social connection has a significant effect comparable to other leading indicators of risk for early death,” says Julianne Holt-Lunstad, PhD, a professor of psychology at Brigham Young University. Feeling alone, she says, ranks up there with smoking, obesity, and physical inactivity in terms of its effects on your health.” Source

Whoa, who knew that loneliness had such a huge impact on your physical health? It seems rather obvious that feelings of loneliness would affect your mental health but I didn’t always understand the role it played on you physically.

But let’s talk a little about how feeling lonely impacts you mentally.

Being lonely can cause:

Decreased memory and learning

Depression and suicide

Increased stress levels

Poor decision-making

Source

 

Where To Find Friendship & Belonging When You Are Lonely

1) Schools

You are needed in schools. They are so many schools wishing they could find adult volunteers to help them supervise children, bring food to the students via different programs, and read to children.

They also need tutors to help students who are struggling with their homework.

Some schools have volunteer grannies that come into schools and form bonds with the students to where they really do feel like those student’s grandmothers.

People are also needed for field trips and other school activities. You could coach sports teams or volunteer to help club sponsors with various afterschool activities that they have to manage.

There is a ton of opportunities to get involved in the schools in your local area.

They would love to have some amazing adults come in and help with the students.

When you do this not only do you get to know the students but you also get to know the parents, teachers, and the principals at your schools.

 

2. Nursing Homes

https://www.seniorliving.org/organization/volunteer/

You know another place that you need it?

Nursing homes.

Nursing homes need caring volunteers who will sit, talk,  and listen to the residents. You could go share your talents with them with the people who live there like singing or drawing.

Many of the residents in nursing homes are themselves experiencing deep feelings of loneliness.

Lots of the senior citizens who live there will be delighted by your presence!

3. Hospitals

Hospitals are also looking for people to volunteer to work in different departments of their building.

You could help push patients who are in wheelchairs. Some people work in the gift shop which means you can meet tons of people there.

I’ve volunteered in the hospital before and I helped with processing medical bracelets and met people I wouldn’t have met otherwise.

There’s also pet therapy opportunities for volunteers. If you have a dog, just think about the smiles of joy you’ll get from lonely hospital patients who can’t go home.

Check out the sweet video below!

 

You’ll get to meet so many people in the community and have them know who you are and the difference you are making in people’s lives.

4. Community and Civic Organizations

Organizations like United Way are looking for people to volunteer for different programs and events that they run.

It can be really difficult sometimes for nonprofits to find reliable adults that will show up there and lend a hand.

As I stated earlier, community and charity organizations are finding it hard to recruit members. Being involved in a charity on a regular basis it is a great way to form new and lasting and meaningful relationships.

5. Churches

Last but not least you are needed in the church.

I understand and acknowledge that many people have been hurt by different members of the church.

It may have been a regular member or it may have been a church leader like a preacher or an elder.

However please understand that church is filled with imperfect people who need Jesus and their sins forgiven just as much as anyone else.

That is not to excuse bad behavior but simply to explain why the bad behavior might occur.

Despite the pain that some church members have caused, there are 10 times more church members who would love to see you at their small group Bible study and church service.

Churches that truly have a heart for God and other people are always searching for ways to reach people in their local and global communities.

Please do not hesitate to start looking for a church family to be a part of. I know that there is one out there for you.

How to find these opportunities

So how do you find these volunteer opportunities or a church to visit?

Well, I simply did a Google search like this:

hospital + volunteer opportunities.

Or I searched:

a nursing homes + volunteer.

And in order to tailor it to your specific location, you can search for either a specific hospital in your area and search on that website for volunteer opportunities.

Or you can type into Google:

hospital + volunteer + your ZIP Code or city and state.

This will ensure that you find those organizations that are close by that need your help.

God Cares For You In Your Lonely Season

But the most important thing that I want you to understand is this:

You’re not only needed and wanted but you were also loved. Your Father in heaven created you in His image and He adores you.

He did not create you to feel lonely.

He wants you to have a relationship with him through His son Christ Jesus.

So in order to have a relationship with God, you must first place your trust in Jesus God’s only son. His perfect sacrifice it makes a way for us to be in community with our Creator.

When we have a community with our creator, even if we don’t have any other person on earth to rely on, we will always have that relationship with God.

That way you will never feel alone how are lonely again.

Scriptures About Loneliness To Remember 

James 4:8

“Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.”

Matthew 11:28

“Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”

Matthew 28:20 

Teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

To learn more about the gospel, I encourage you to visit this page.

 

 

 

 

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woman sitting alone on green couch lonely people are needed

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25 Eye-Opening Signs You’re An Emotionally Healthy Girl

 

Nicky

Angela Johnson is the owner and creator of Healthy As You Can (HAYC) and Christian Blogging Academy (CBA). She is also an author and certified life coach. She started this blog to help support other Christians who want to live a healthy and natural lifestyle but don't know where to start because it can be oh so confusing. She's still trying to figure it all out and as she does, she'll let you know!

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Nicky

Angela Johnson is the owner and creator of Healthy As You Can (HAYC) and Christian Blogging Academy (CBA). She is also an author and certified life coach. She started this blog to help support other Christians who want to live a healthy and natural lifestyle but don't know where to start because it can be oh so confusing. She's still trying to figure it all out and as she does, she'll let you know!

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