It was P.T. Barnum who said, “The foundation of success in life is sound health…it is also the basis of happiness.” And Pastor A.R. Bernard postulated that the “quality of your thinking determines the quality of your life.” Continuing this line of thought leads to the conclusion that one’s thought processes, physical health and life success are intricately bound together.
While everyone feels isolated and lonely at one time or another, some people are not resilient enough to dispel the feeling and bounce back to internal stability and mental equilibrium. This sends them pinballing through the day to the depths of fear, misery and hopelessness. When loneliness overtakes you, and seems to be stifling your very life, here are some steps to help you overcome it.
- Connect with God. Cry out to Him and ask Him to comfort you. Pray like David, “[Oh God] Turn to me and be gracious to me, for I am lonely and afflicted. Relieve the troubles of my heart, and bring me out of my distress.” Psalm 25:16-17 (NRSV)
- Trust that God hears you and He alone can satisfy your deepest needs. He promises, “When they call to me, I will answer them; when they are in trouble, I will be with them. I will rescue them and honor them.” Psalm 91:15 (GNT)
- Defy your feeling of worthlessness. Get enough sleep. Eat healthy meals. Check your self-talk. God loves you more than you’ll ever understand. Believe Him when He says, “See, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands.” Isaiah 49:16 (NKJV)
- Challenge your thoughts of helplessness. You are stronger than you think. Take God at His word, “Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” Isaiah 41:10 (NKJV)
- Be proactive in forming new connections. Be friendly. Focus on the needs and feelings of others. Reach out to those who appear to be lonely, withdrawn, or left out. “If you offer your food to the hungry and satisfy the needs of the afflicted, then your light shall rise in the darkness and your gloom be like the noonday.” Isaiah 58:10 (NRSV)
- Stop feeling sorry for yourself. Cultivate new interests. Fill your life with positive activities. Attend a class, participate in community functions, volunteer for a cause and provide for the needs of others. “Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others.” Philippians 2:3-4 (NKJV)
There is no need to suffer the pain and despair of isolation. God gives awareness and understanding of loneliness, as well as instructions on how to eliminate and transcend it. Reaching out to Him, and others around you, can help you shake off those engulfing waves of alienation and lonesomeness and step into your successful life of purpose.
– Florence Callender