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Social Isolation and Loneliness Impact Brain Function

Eight strategies for coping with loneliness

1. Start each day with a 5-minute gratitude practice. Take the time to cultivate a gratitude practice, which is an appreciation of something meaningful to you.

2. Livestream fitness classes.  Exercise has tremendous benefits on physical and psychological health by reducing stress and uplifting mood.  Participating in zoom classes connects you to a community that can help ease symptoms associated with depression. 

3. Mindfulness-based meditation practice. Mindfulness based-smart phone interventions have been demonstrated to reduce loneliness and increase social contact and engagement.

4. Read or listen to audiobooks. Books enrich our sense of the world, spark the imagination, and lead to new ideas and creative inspirations.

5. Spend time in nature or bring it indoors to you. Cognitive neuroscience research demonstrates that the environment we spend time in can increase or reduce our stress, impacting our overall health and well-being.

6. Connect through zoom dates.  Schedule zoom calls with friends, family, or loved ones.  

7. Computer-based language training. Learning a new language can connect you with other cultures.

8. Cognitive behavior therapy (CBT). Don’t be alone with your thoughts. CBT is an effective way to address mood and anxiety disorders, and research shows that videoconferencing is as effective as in-person sessions.

How Social Isolation and Loneliness Impact Brain Function | Psychology Today