This post was developed via a partnership with BetterHelp.
We often hear how technology isolates us socially. However, for those who are truly struggling with loneliness and mental health concerns, the internet and technology are safe havens that can offer support and solidarity in times of stress.
We can see how isolation can actually increase technological advancements and increase introspection through the many inventions and amazing art that have come out of our most isolated moments in society.
Even if you’re craving human connection, there are ways to connect with other people online that can help you beat even the worst loneliness possible.
Multiplayer videogames are a great way to connect with other people and enjoy a hobby. Hobbies help you distract your brain and focus on something other than your loneliness, and speaking to people in-game can solve your social support and connection needs.
Many people meet lifelong friends through video games. Most video gaming systems also have the ability to add friends and play in groups, so you can chat with people and save your favorite teammates to your profile to play with in the future.
Video games are another way to “play” as an adult, which is good for our mental health. Studies have even shown these benefits are possible, even with the negative backlash that gaming gets in the media.
If you are lonely due to living alone or not having a lot of people close by to visit with, video chat may help you get relief. Video chatting software allows you to see the faces of the people you love while you talk to them in real-time. If you’ve never tried video chatting, now is the time to get set up. You can also type messages, send reactions, and share videos with friends.
There are some video chat apps that allow you to watch a movie or TV show while video chatting with a group of people (or just one!). It’s a great way to feel like you’re doing something with somebody you care about, even if they’re far away.
Robots are another way to feel less alone at home. For elderly people especially, a robot pet can provide excellent companionship and love that would usually be felt with a regular pet. However, robot pets do not require any care! Just plop them in their charging station, and they can walk around the house. You may find comfort in their sounds and presence, even if they are just a toy.
Some robots are built with loneliness in mind and can project videos, play music, or speak to you when you’re alone. There’s something for every price point and need.
Did you know that you can now try online therapy? Gone are the days of driving far away to get to a therapist’s office, only to find out that therapy has been canceled. With online therapy, you simply log into your therapy account and click the link to open a video call, telephone call, or chat session with your therapist.
If you live in a rural area and are experiencing loneliness, talking to a therapist about how you feel can provide tons of relief. If you want to learn more about loneliness, check out BetterHelp today. They have some more methods for curing loneliness, as well as up-to-date studies on what causes it.
Online Forums and Groups
One way to connect with other people online is by utilizing online forums and groups. These groups are specialized for certain communities, so you can meet people who relate to you or have a similar life to you without leaving home. These groups are great for those who don’t leave home often or live in a small area without a lot of diversity. You can make new friends and talk to people who understand your identity, which can decrease loneliness.
You can also try purchasing a smart speaker to reduce loneliness if you live alone. Smart speakers will respond to your voice and can talk back to you. You can ask them to perform tasks such as:
- Playing music
- Telling jokes
- Turning the lights on and off (with a smart bulb)
- Searching for answers to questions
- Doing equations
- Helping you find resources
If you don’t like to go about searching for things the old-fashioned way, a smart speaker is a great investment. The best part is that you can find one at a relatively low price, as well.
Finally, if you haven’t already jumped on the social media train, there’s always time to do so. You can find additional support groups on sites like Facebook, and you can watch funny videos and live videos on TikTok. Apps like these are meant to connect you with others, and if you’re very lonely, they may help you feel more plugged in with the rest of the world.
It’s up to you, but social media is popular for a reason. It’s not all negative, and there are positive communities to be found in every group online.