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Beyond Loneliness

1. Do your grieving early and intensely. You don't have to be strong for others. You are not obligated to get back to normal so that others can be comfortable around you. Grief is a sign that you are healing and growing as a person. Let it happen.

2. After a reasonable period of intense grief, say good-bye to the relationship that was lost. It is a psychological amputation that is vital to your overall health. Some people keep a journal and record their good-bye there. Others say good-bye while holding his or her picture in front of them. Saying good-bye is the healthy closure to the period of intense grief.

3. Begin to concentrate on your own life. Lay short-term and long-term goals for using your talents and for developing new ones. Gradually break habit patterns based upon the "two of us" and move from the world of "we" to the world of "I". Work at building your self-identity and things that you like to do. In a family, plan things for your new-sized family. Make a calendar of events.

4. Consider solitude as your friend. This is time for self-confrontation. Who am I? What can I become? How am I viewing life - as a drudgery, a right, or a gift? What are my values? Do I like myself? What areas of my life can I improve? Am I a giver or a taker? These are a few of the self-confrontation questions that can turn your solitude into growth adventures.

5. Become knowledgeable about the world around you. Broaden you interests and be sure to increase your reading of uplifting books and magazines. This expands the inner person. A variety of challenging activities will make you an interesting person and put you in touch with interesting people. This is a good way to combat loneliness that can lead to despair.

6. Volunteer your time. Often this is an effective measure against loneliness. However is does depend upon the type of service for which you are volunteering.

7. Grief produces fatigue. It is essential to get adequate rest, eat a balanced diet and do plenty of big muscle exercise. Instead of getting around in "any old clothes" all the time, dress up and look your best. You will feel good about yourself, and when you feel good about yourself, you will find it easier to reach out to others.

Loneliness often becomes a way of life for those who persist in hanging onto the past. Trying to relive your past years will rob you of the energy you need to make each day a new chapter in your life. Hold onto the valuable lessons from the past, but step out and go beyond the events and achievements of days gone by.

No matter what we do, we cannot change the past

A Simple Prayer:

"Father in heaven,
Thank you for these encouraging points to help overcome lonelinss. Please raise me up from despair and set my feet on better pathways
Thank You, in the name of Jesus, the Great Physician."
"More things are wrought by prayer than this world dreams of


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