7 Ways to Be Less Lonely


Are you one of the millions of Americans dealing with loneliness? In our technology-reliant, socially distanced, work-from-home world, it’s common for in-person interactions to be limited. And though people have become increasingly disconnected for decades now, the COVID-19 pandemic accelerated this trend. Isolation has become a way of life for far too many Americans, and it’s taking a toll on their well-being.

In fact, in the wake of COVID, the U.S. Surgeon General issued an advisory declaring loneliness a new epidemic. That’s because loneliness leads to physical and mental health consequences, including:

To combat this growing problem, we must prioritize creating and growing our social connections. Read on for a variety of simple strategies to get you back to facing—and enjoying—the real world.

Loneliness leads to physical and mental health consequences, including heart disease, anxiety, high blood pressure, dementia, depression, and diabetes. Click To Tweet


If you’re looking for ways to stop feeling lonely, there’s good news. There are many methods for you to get more face time with other people. Try one or more of these tactics.

1. Give back.

Many studies have shown significant health benefits associated with giving back to others. First, helping out allows you to get out of your own head, putting the focus outside of yourself. Second, it feels good to benefit the lives of others by lending a hand. Third, it helps you meet other well-meaning people.

Find a local charity or organization that fits with your interests. Libraries, hospitals, schools, and churches often have volunteer opportunities. If you want something less formal, simply find a way to help your neighbors.

You can also join ongoing community service efforts or create your own, such as organizing a local cleanup. Helping out makes you feel good in the moment and in the long term.

2. Become a joiner.

Look around your area to find ways you can interact with your fellow citizens. Join a church or temple, for example, or a local organization or outreach program. Enroll in a class, learn a new hobby, or visit the farmer’s market and chat with the food producers. Or you might want to get involved politically, attending town halls or government meetings.

Some mental health organizations even offer in-person support groups for attendees to share their feelings without judgment. And, if the group you want to join doesn’t exist, start one! You can create a positive chain reaction and foster connections in your community by taking the initiative.

3. Start moving.

Exercise is always a great idea to improve mental health, but in certain cases, it can give you a burst of social activity, too. Join a local gym and try out a variety of group classes.

You’ll not only get to challenge yourself physically through new exercise routines, but you’ll sweat alongside fellow enthusiasts. If they’re regulars, they might even be able to pass along helpful fitness tips.

Or check into signing up for adult sports teams, the local swimming pool, free yoga classes in the park—whatever your area offers.

4. Tap into online resources.

True, moving so much of our lives online has partly created the loneliness problem. But we can also use online resources in a savvy way—as an avenue for making and maintaining connections. This is especially helpful for those who can’t easily leave their homes, for example.

Take advantage of free online classes where you can meet people with similar interests. Connect to groups or family members through social media. But make sure you’re actually engaging, not just scrolling. Join online support groups or discussion boards. Or play games that have built active online communities you can join. There are many ways to get involved virtually.

5. Spend time in nature.

While loneliness can have negative effects, solitude can be restorative. One way you can feel more connected, even when you’re alone, is by engaging with the natural world around you. Yale University has reported that studies show time in nature helps combat stress and has other physical benefits.

These include lowering blood pressure and stress hormone levels, calming the nervous system, boosting the immune system, improving self-esteem and mood, and reducing anxiety. Just a couple of hours per week can create tangible health benefits.

6. Reconnect with friends and family.

Many of us fall out of touch with old friends and family members over the years. We are all busy and juggling full schedules, but taking the time for personal connection is a task that should claim priority in everyone’s lives.

Consider it a must-have for your health, just like brushing your teeth or exercising. Schedule a check-in call each week, write a card or letter, or chat via social media. Ask questions, share photos, and reminisce over old memories. You’ll feel more connected to other people, and even to your own past.

7. Be present.

When you do spend time with people—whether on the phone, online, or in person—be sure that you are fully engaged. Multitasking is a harmful habit in our society. It’s the one thing that the more we do it, the worse we get.

Put away the addictive mobile devices and postpone your daily to-dos while you are spending time with someone you care about. Stay open to and aware of the simple micro-moments of happiness in your daily interactions. You’ll get more out of the experience, and its positive effects will reverberate more deeply in your life.


Loneliness has negative effects on physical and mental health, and some of them are serious. If loneliness is interfering with your daily functioning, or leading to larger issues such as depression, seek help from a mental health professional. If loneliness is causing suicidal thoughts, dial the National Suicide and Crisis Lifeline at 988.

We may all be facing a loneliness epidemic, but we don’t have to do it alone. With these tips, you can stop feeling so isolated and start feeling more connected to others. When you feel bonded to friends and family, you will also feel happier and healthier.

Depression, anxiety, and other mental health issues can’t wait. At Amen Clinics, we’re here for you. We offer in-clinic brain scanning and appointments, as well as mental telehealth, clinical evaluations, and therapy for adults, teens, children, and couples. Find out more by speaking to a specialist today at 888-288-9834 or visit our contact page here.


  1. Excellent advice!

    Comment by Douglas Morris — August 9, 2023 @ 12:16 PM

  2. Thank for your advice it was very helpful.

    Comment by Louise Pearson — August 16, 2023 @ 3:29 AM

  3. I live alone and I'm in my late 50s I very rarely go out because of a mental disability, most days are spent in prayer, I have to grown daughters and 3 grandchildren which sadly I don't see much, I have a relationship with a woman for years, I have good and bad days I'm on several medications to help with me my bipolar aniexty depression disorder, I know it's a secular country, but praying throughout the day helps me in dark times. I guess I got worse mentally when I saw both my parents die within 13 days of each other 3 years ago. I'm grateful to God for pulling me away from suicide. I know I'll never be " normal " I just try to live in present moment

    Comment by Jimmy — August 16, 2023 @ 4:22 AM

  4. I read your article and it was definitely very good advice, but what if you don’t have any family or they don’t talk to you and you’re an only child? I want so much to be part of a family.

    Comment by Vicki — August 16, 2023 @ 4:24 AM

  5. I agree! I am a nurse, working 2 part time jobs, juggling caring for elderly parents . While I don't struggle with loneliness, I do find it so calming and re-centering to be out in nature. I love going to the beach or to a local park, so I can empty my mind, de-stress, and have time to think and process my life. Listening to nature, feeling the sun , breathing deeply the outdoor air are all helpful. Even if I cannot go anywhere, I take a chair outside and enjoy my own little yard. Often when doing something like this, I end up meeting others doing the same thing!

    Comment by Debbie McCollum — August 17, 2023 @ 7:34 AM

  6. Thanks for the good writeup. It in truth was once a amusement account it. Look complex to far added agreeable from you! However, how can we keep up a correspondence?

    Comment by graliontorile — November 22, 2023 @ 8:04 PM

  7. Its wonderful as your other posts : D, regards for posting. "Always be nice to people on the way up because you'll meet the same people on the way down." by Wilson Mizner.

    Comment by gralion torile — November 25, 2023 @ 8:30 PM

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