“I fought so hard to get this house,” she told me. “But when I come home after a long day of work and I look at the hinges hanging off the doors, I think to myself, ‘do I really have to do this thing called life on my own?!'”
The words from this powerful, strong, successful sista were familiar to me. As a dating coach who works intimately with single Black women, I’ve borne witness to how the pain of loneliness affects a sister’s daily life, and I’ve worked hard to create a safe space so that women can give voice to this pain, because if we’re honest, most advice only puts a band-aid on the deep, unfulfilled longings of their heart.
I want to help you with real solutions to help you cure your loneliness and heal your hope so that no matter what your relationship status is, your life is full of joy and anticipation.
1) Curate Community
Just because you’re an independent woman, doesn’t mean you were meant to rely solely on yourself to meet all of your needs. Besides, you can’t keep being the responsible one everyone else turns to when they’re in a crisis and never have someone to take care of you. Self-care is necessary, but it can only take you so far. You need a squad who can uplift you when you’re down.
I want you to think carefully about who you will bring into your circle. These men and women should hold themselves to the highest integrity; they should respect and honor you; they should be able to tell you the truth, even if you don’t feel like hearing it; and they should be in sync with you so that even if you don’t ask for help, they see when you’re in need and will come to your aid. Once you’ve identified them, call them up today and tell them how they can support you. Feeling seen and supported is a phenomenal way to beat back loneliness.
2) Stop Hiding Behind “Busyness”
Let’s keep it real: you use busyness to distract you from loneliness. But working 60… 70… 80 hours per week will only cause more problems in your life. I’ve seen it firsthand with my clients who manifest health challenges, financial burdens, and an overall lack of fulfillment because they don’t have time for things that fill them up with joy, much less, time to date!
Give yourself time and space to just be. I know that can be scary if you’re trying to avoid so-called negative feelings like sadness, fear, and anxiety about your single status, so let me give you a powerful coaching tool: Finish your feelings! The only reason emotions feel so overwhelming is because we stuff them down or numb them out and when they do get triggered, they slam us like a tsunami. It’s safe to give your feelings a voice. When you do, you’ll notice you won’t need to stay busy so much. You may even have time to date!
3) Give Yourself Permission to Indulge in Pleasure
Desire isn’t a dirty word, sis. I’ve noticed that many single women who are struggling with loneliness have been denying themselves the simple pleasures of life. Oh, I know you travel to exotic places several times a year, you get mani’s and pedi’s, and you treat yourself to fine dining and luxury gifts. But grooming yourself is not the same as an indulgence (and truth be told, many people go on vacation to escape the stresses of their life). I want you to give yourself permission to indulge in pleasure every single day.
For example, have you been working like a dog trying to get that last bit of money to buy a house or retire early, thinking you’ll take a break and enjoy life after you’re done? Then you’re denying yourself the pleasure of stillness with a cup of tea in the morning. Or, have you decided you won’t date more than one person because you have an intention to get married and you don’t want to waste your time? Then you’re denying yourself the pleasure of a man’s company over dinner, and you could be missing out on fun experiences, even if they don’t lead you to the altar.
Pleasure fills the void by reminding you that it’s the present moment that matters and re-acquaints you with the sensation of joy. You can’t feel loneliness and joy at the same time. So, create a daily joy ritual to beat back those lonely feelings.
You have valiantly dealt with being single, and you’ve created an amazing life. It’s ok, sis, to admit how tiresome, lonely and boring it can often be to live life while you’re waiting for your relationship status to change. I want you to know that I see you and that I’m here for you.
BMWK, Do you have a community to support you when you’re feeling lonely? What else do you feel you need to help cure your loneliness?