Loneliness & Depression

Loneliness & Depression

4 Tried and Tested Tips on How To Deal with Loneliness and Depression

KVINC FEB 12, 2022 Post Comments
Song: Lonely
By: Brian McKnight


One of many musical inspirations behind Book I: "Poetic Knight" and Book II: "Thorns and Roses" found in my Collectors Edition, "Visions of Prosetry."

The more we hold on to hate and keep grudges in our hearts towards those who've wronged or offended us, the more it destroys our soul.

Tiny as a seed this hate grows into a tree; buries itself deep within us; making it hard to get rid of.

No man can rid us of these bad vines, only the Holy Spirit of God.

Trust in Him for your deliverance always.

One of many musical inspirations behind Book I: "Poetic Knight" and Book II: "Thorns and Roses" found in my Collectors Edition, "Visions of Prosetry."

There have been many instances in life when I feel lonely and depressed. It didn't necessarily have to be something big. Even a little something could throw me in the doom of depression and loneliness (especially a romantic relationship breakup). When I felt that it had started affecting my work, I set out to research how to deal with loneliness and depression. I came across an interesting study that highlighted loneliness as a key cause of depression. so before we go on dealing with how to deal with loneliness and depression, there is an important question that needs to be answered first, Why do I have depression?Just like any disease, depression too needs to be studied. Unlike cold, depression is not something that you would simply catch, it has deep underlying causes that need to be looked at.

Causes Of Depression And Loneliness

Now before we set about looking at how to deal with loneliness and depression, let us look into the causes. If you feel depressed and lonely, always ask yourself: why do I have depression? Try and find the causes yourself. However, if you feel lost, here are a few general causes of depression and loneliness.

1. Poor Support Structure

One of the major causes of depression is loneliness itself. You are likely to feel alone and lonely if you don't have the right support structure. This could be anyone, your friends, family or spouse. If you do not have someone you could confide in there is a high chance you will feel lonely and depressed.

2. Stressful Environment

This could be at your workplace or at home, if you think there is too much stress around you, you are likely to feel isolated and depressed. Look out for stress triggers in your environment. It could be a mean boss, a narcissistic friend or a hefty workload, all of these tend to make an environment full of stress.

3. Family History

If your family has a history of depression or mood disorder, it is likely that you too would get it in your genes.

4. Trauma

If you have ever experienced trauma, be it in your childhood or even in the present. There is a high chance of you developing depression and anxiety.

5. Side effects of medicine

See if you have started any new medications. Often at times medications result in mood swings and depression.

How To Deal With Loneliness And Depression

Now that you have answered the question of why I have depression? Here is how you can deal with it!

Tip 1: Stay Busy

You must have heard the proverb, an idle mind is a devil's workshop. I live by this proverb. If you keep yourself busy, exercise and set a routine, there is a very high chance of you coping with depression. It is very common to feel depressed when we are idle and have nothing productive to do. One of the main reasons for this is social media as well. Sitting idle we tend to binge on social media and feel depressed by the virtual world and all the glitter it has. Thus, it is best to stay busy with something productive.

Tip 2: Join a Club

What better way to be productive than to join a club. It could be anything that sparks an interest, even read a book.

A book club or an art class can help you meet like-minded people. This in return will help you cope with loneliness which will then have a ripple effect on your depression.

Tip 3: Adopt a Pet

If you are not one of those people who get scared of animals then adopting a pet can do wonders for you. It helps you keep busy plus sharing a bond with a furry friend can be therapeutic. If you think you don't have the resources to take care of a pet, you can always volunteer in an animal shelter or elsewhere. This way you are likely to meet new friends and keep busy too.

Tip 4: Meditate

Album: Moon Spells
By: Llewellyn

Meditation is truly magical, it can help you recenter yourself and bring peace to you. Shutting your mind off for some time can truly help you fight depression. There have been various studies where the answer to the question of how to deal with loneliness and depression is always meditation. You can read more about meditation in this article. Now, even though these tips are very effective. If you feel like you or your peer is facing a deeply engraved depression or has a serious condition, make sure to consult a specialist. It is important to get proper treatment for this too as mental illnesses can never be taken lightly. There are many talented people who can help you get out of this emotional slump. I would even ask you to indulge yourself in short narratives, quotes, and sayings on the go, they have truly helped me and I am sure they will help you too.

Qualifications

Since I am an emotional writer and romantic soul at heart, I often find what helps me through my loneliness is listening to love music. Some would often say that my choice of music is depressing (like the song above by Brian McKnight), but I find this genre of rhythm and soul soothing to my spirit as it has helped me through loneliness and depressions in the past; through breakups and heartaches. Sometimes, I would also do volunteer work, mentoring, canvas painting and graphic designs, as this helps me to pass the time. Some would ask,

"If you are going through depression and loneliness, do you think it wise to mentor or help other people through their problems?"

Absolutely! Personally, when I help another person or encourage someone else through their situation, it sometimes make my issue seem smaller, it brings joy and encouragement through my problem, and you find that sometimes you learn a lot from the other person you are helping which you can apply to your life and circumstance.

If you have read my bio you would know that I've been through my share of obstacles and failures in my life. I was picked on and bullied as a kid; teased (by my own race and peers) because my hair was nappy, the clothes I wore, and because of my skin color. It was the big lips, bat ears, two big front teeth... The list goes on (read a prose I did entitled: "Book of Beauty" in the book Visions of Prosetry, which tells the story of a little girl's transition from the Caribbean to the US and her experience with discrimination and bullying). Here is a snippet of that prose:

"Destiny, (Daddy would say) people are books, and this world is a library. Just sit back and "check out" the books and you can learn many things. The cover should represent what the inside of the soul is all about, and likewise, the story of the soul; what's written on the pages should represent what the cover, or outer appearance is all about. Both should be in unison. Most people spend their whole lives beautifying the cover of their book, but inside are filled with flaws. Their story inside is deceptive to the readers, not their own, and does not match the outer cover." - Book of Beauty - TC Neville Senior

Often times, I would be used as the scapegoat because I was too quiet to defend myself. I'd often isolate myself from the rest of the world and live in my own. This is when I turned to music and poetry.

I can recall back then that I was so embarrassed of life and who I were that I'd hang my head in shame to the point my spine and shoulders began to form like a hunchback. People always used to tell me,

"Boy, lift your head up, look where you are going otherwise you will run into a pole."

Truth be told, this low self-esteem and depression rode my shoulders for a very long time, even through high school. It was when I moved to the US from the Caribbean in early 90s, things got a little bearable. It was a whole new and bigger world. A new culture introduction made me realized how messed up I was inside. It was an incident that occured in the 11th grade of an American School; a skinny black boy with a big Afro looking like a Q-tip was me. I was tending to my locker readying myself for the next class when a young lady (student) approached me and asked if I was from Africa. I was immediately offended and retorted, "Hell no, I ain't from no Africa!" I can tell in her eyes that she was hurt. She explained (with her beautiful accent) it was because of my complexion and accent is why she approached me. She was from Ghana. She was the most beautiful dark-skinned girl I've ever met, who later became my best friend.

Not surprising, as a young teen bursting with hormones, I ended up falling for her in the latter part of our senior year in high school. Later, I asked that best friend from Ghana (as I walked her home after school; using the paper method I'd slipped her much earlier in the day: "Check box for 'Yes' and this box for 'No'") if we could take our relationship to the next level. I was rejected with this response in the most innocent and nicest way: "You are too dark for me, I only date light-skinned men." (Ha! Says the girl who was just as dark skinned as I am) We remained friends all the way up to the last time I reconnected with her around the year 2007 (years later). The last time we spoke was in 2009.

I think at that time (we reconnected in 2007) while we had dinner, I could tell (based on her views and ideas) that she had grown out of this so-called skin color mentality, but it was already too late for us to hookup due to different career destinations and state changes.

You see, back in the Caribbean where I was raised since the age of 5, although it was a mixed flavor of heritage, culture and religion, the mentality of the black race was that Africa meant poor, and if you were jet black with nappy hair or even resemble the qualities (in their eyes) as an African, you were shunned and ridiculed. One either had to be white, mixed with other races, black with good hair (Indian hair they called it); or any other qualities than just "plain black". So, one can imagine what all I had to do to fit the so-called profile to get people to notice me (ultimately changing my identity). I laugh at this now when I recall actually going to a hair-dresser and paying to get my Afro jerry-curled and permed. I actually recalled literally having rollers in my hair sitting under a hair-dryer. Man... the things peer-pressure makes you do when you don't know any better.

The respective females (even the ones as dark as I am) believed that they were only supposed to date light-skinned or mixed men so that their babies would be mixed as well. They frowned upon the dark skinned and natural beauty of the average man. Imagine the weight and magnitude of this mentality; the brainwashings I had to endure growing up in this backwards world (no offense to the beautiful Caribbean and its people. I'm only speaking about my peers' belief during my time as a child). Where did these young children even get or entertained these ideas? This was not the least of it, if one did not have on the latest fashion clothes or brand-named shoes, one was looked at as being poor. I am even more ashamed to tell you what I had to do to fit that billet too. (Talking about keeping up with the Joneses)

"To put on the coat of pride is like bathing in gasoline
and standing next to an open flame."
- A King's Fall - TC Neville Senior, Author

As I reflect now, it all seemed so stupid. I always remember this quote from my late Grandmother that said,

"Child, always buy things that are cheap with an expensive look." ...

Sorry Readers, I didn't intend to delve into my childhood roots, so I will cut it short here because I am getting a little off topic. Let's save that for another time and place. I guess now, based on the little I revealed above, you know why I am the kind of person I am today when it involves neutrality and love for all races, culture, and peoples.

Nevertheless, I say all that to say this... Most of my loneliness and depression stemmed from early childhood into adulthood. It was not until I joined the US Marines back in the 90s was then my confidence began to grow and my chin and spine began to lift and straightened (literally).

No matter how good that news sounded however, it seemed depression and loneliness still rode my shirt-tail because of the many deployments I made away from my family and kids, which eventually destroyed my marriage, home, and ultimately resulted in a divorce.

The Bottom Line

Everyone of us no matter how popular, rich, poor, the color of our skin, background, or whatever experience we've had to endure, struggle with some sought of loneliness and depression. Like the article indicates above, you never want to keep your mind idle on the things that cause you to meditate on depressive emotions, but rather try to distract these thoughts and feelings by finding something positive and constructive to do. We never want to be left alone with our feelings because these thoughts can eventually turn into actions (in my case as a young pre-teen, I wanted to take my life because I didn't think I was loved or handsome enough to be in this world). Some people, instead of hurting themselves, turn to hurting others, whether emotionally or physically. This is a dangerous line to cross. Beware!

Never bottle up or compartmentalize your feelings because eventually they will explode. Although you may feel you are good at it, and our natural mind tends to use this as a self defense mechanism to protect the mind from the full blunt of the problem... This is really unhealthy. Talk to someone who will listen; a "trusted, non-judgemental" family member or friend; a support group, but ultimately seek help and a positive means to cope with these feelings. Remember,

"Anything that is stuffed and stuffed to the point it cannot be stuffed anymore eventually overflows, and worst, explodes. Likewise, any computer system or electronic device that is used continually with out pause or loaded with so much data eventually crashes."

Please do not be that person who crashes. Unlike a device or hardware which can be replaced, we all have one life on this earth. Where the mind goes the body follows, and what affects the mind also affect the body and your health.

Veterans Crisis Center:

If you or a Veteran you know is experiencing an emotional crisis, please call: +1 800 273 8255 and push "1" for immediate assistance.

Thank you for taking the time to read this article. Feel free to comment below and tell us how you dealt with your loneliness and depression. Your story can help someone deal with theirs today. Any questions about this article, send me an email, subscribe or follow us today.

Vee Nelly ( Author )

Vee is a poet and writer by heart from the West Indies. He has published several series of books. To name a few, "Visions of Prosetry, A King's Fall & Dark Haze. Continue Reading