How to Deal With Loneliness After Divorce

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Loneliness is one of the most common emotions recently divorced people experience. Even though your tension and stress may have eased -- and even though you feel the separation was for the best -- you may still feel an empty space in your life. This is very common and, luckily, is usually temporary. Adjusting to your new circumstances may take time, but have no fear, in time, your life will fill up with new activities and routines.

Step 1

Set new goals. It is time to start looking forward instead of back. Don't look at yourself as lonely. Instead, focus on the free time you now have to do the things you have always wanted to but never had time for. Some examples might be:

• Focus on eating better (you no longer have to worry about what the other person likes).

• Exercise more.

• Spend more quality time with your children (if applicable).

• Change your hair or clothing style.

• Redecorate your home to more reflect your personal tastes.

• Clean out all of your closets and drawers and become more organized.

• Start a new hobby.

• Learn a new language.

• Find creative ways to make extra money.

• Spend more time on your spiritual development.

• Take classes at your local college.

• Reconnect with old friends.

• Spend more time with the rest of your family.

• Explore websites that pertain to your personal interests.

Step 2

Begin activities that help you meet new people. While it might be a little scary at first, there are tons of ways you can meet new people on your own. (This has nothing to do with dating. If you are recently divorced, it might be a little soon to get involved with someone new.) Doing some of the following things can help you make friends with others who share common interests with you.

• Go to Weight Watchers meetings.

• Go to exercise, yoga, meditation, tai chi, etc., classes.

• Learning a new hobby in a social atmosphere (painting classes at your local crafts store for example).

• Take some college courses.

• Volunteer at a local shelter, nursing home or literacy center.

• Get involved in fundraising for a local charity.

• Join a divorce support group.

Plan these meetings or classes for after work or on the weekends when you have your new spare time. Not only will this keep loneliness at bay, but also you will be reaching some personal goals as well.

Step 3

Work on building your self-esteem and optimism. You have just been a through a really rough time, and chances are, your self-esteem might have taken a hit or two in the process. Luckily there are tons of resources that can help you feel better about yourself and life in general. Purchase self-help books, tapes or movies that will help make you feel inspired. It is hard to feel bad when listening to a tape about all the reasons you deserve to feel good.

There are also small groups that meet to discuss how to build your self-esteem and feel better about yourself. You can find many of these groups planning local get-togethers through online forums. Don't forget that there are also a ton of websites that have this uplifting self-help information available to you at no cost. Even if you are not yet up to meeting with strangers in person, the forums at these sites are wonderful places to exchange thoughts, ideas and to get helpful advice.