The Problem with Winter Isolation

I’ve got a running theme about being alone and getting out of the house, lately, and this post will be no different. When I was explaining to Shane my ideas for the last post, he reminded me of this video where the guy stayed in his apartment with absolutely zero human contact. It’s called The Loneliness Project, and it’s actually a “campaign to end loneliness” about giving older people friendship and helping them to not feel isolated. If you haven’t seen it, you should. It’s very eye-opening and a bit shocking, and honestly, it feels a bit extreme. I mean, who honestly stays in their house with no contact with the outside world; not even a cell phone?

Truthfully, a lot of people. Whether they don’t have a phone, or are just not looking at theirs, it can get so so easy to let yourself start hiding, and then not want to come out of it. Especially for those who suffer from anxiety and depression. It’s not that you want to feel isolated; you just can’t physically make yourself get out of bed, much less out of the house.

 

I mentioned in this post, how easy it is to let yourself get overwhelmed by seasonal depression, but it’s exacerbated when you already suffer from general anxiety and depression. The winter is a really hard time for a lot of people. Between the anxiety that comes with the holidays and the depression some suffer from lack of daylight, people are upping their medications (assuming they’re lucky enough to be able to afford them) and resorting to semi-unorthodox methods like “light therapy” to help pull them out.

But ultimately, while those are completely valid methods of coping, loneliness and isolation can eat you up if you let it. Solution? Friends! Family (if you have it)! Coworkers can be a good source of companionship, too. Even if it’s just going to someone else’s place for coffee or meeting up with friends to walk around the park, forcing yourself – yes, forcing – to get out of the house and in a new environment is going to help immensely.

If you’re like me and are introverted and have anxiety, keep it small. Maybe don’t do stuff with a bunch of people, but with one or two super close friends instead. The key, though, is to try to avoid isolating yourself constantly. Sure, it’s refreshing to be alone sometimes, and even necessary to re-energize for some people. But one of the worst things you can do for your anxiety and depression, even if it’s just seasonal, is to isolate yourself completely. Phone a friend. Reach out to someone.

You’re worth it.

Love,
Angel

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