Feeling Lonely? Can mindfulness decrease your loneliness?

Feeling Lonely? Can mindfulness decrease your loneliness?

Imagine you are enjoying an evening with your friends and you are about to go to a party or just hang out and talk. Your friend just told you this really silly story about what happened to him yesterday and all of you are laughing. You feel happy, surrounded by your loved ones, knowing the evening is going to be good. The last time you had an evening like this feels ages ago. Instead, you are sitting at home, seeing your friends over the screen of your mobile phone, or watching another show on Netflix. You feel isolated and alone.

It is normal to feel lonely occasionally, but extreme situations, such as a pandemic lead to an increased feeling of loneliness. But we are optimistic to have found a tool with which everyone might be able to reduce this feeling of loneliness. The tool we are talking about is called mindfulness meditation which is defined as focusing on the present moment while being non-judgemental of current flowing thoughts. Since loneliness is linked to feelings of depression and anxiety, we hypothesize that mindfulness meditation can reduce feelings of loneliness, as it was shown to be effective in reducing feelings of depression and anxiety. However, up to this date, no research investigated if mindfulness mediation can reduce feelings of loneliness. It is urgent that one looks into this, as we believe that regarding the pandemic we are facing right now, it is necessary to figure out effective ways to cope with loneliness.

References:
Brouzos, A., Vassilopoulos, S. P., Baourda, V. C., Tassi, C., Stavrou, V., Moschou, K., & Brouzou, K. O. (2021). “Staying Home–Feeling Positive”: Effectiveness of an online positive psychology group intervention during the COVID-19 pandemic. Current Psychology, 1-13.

Luberto, C. M., Huberty, J., Puzia, M., & Vranceanu, A. M. (2021). Usage Patterns of the Calm Meditation App Among People with Cardiovascular Disease. Mindfulness, 1-11.

Pictures:
Image by Melk Hagelslag from Pixabay

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