A 2018 survey conducted by Cigna insurance concluded that out of 20,000 adults, almost half report feeling lonely sometimes or always; feeling left out; not having daily meaningful in-person social interactions or extended conversations; or feeling isolated. A similar piece of research conducted in 2018 by AARP Foundation, an organization dedicated to empowering American seniors, reports that 35% of adults over 45 grapples with loneliness; this ratio increased to 50% if the adults are making less than $25,000 a year. AARP determined that besides financial stress, a diagnosis of depression or anxiety, living in an urban community, and the increased use of technology for communication are identified as factors that increase feelings of loneliness. This study points to the unfulfilling connectivity that texting, messaging on apps, and face timing as compared to the genuine face-to-face interpersonal conversation.
To combat loneliness, you can join a club that speaks to a genuine interest that you have or will allow you to reconnect with a passion from the past that you miss being involved with. You can learn a new skill by taking a class in computer skills or a foreign language. Create regular touch points with people in your weekly calendar such as calls with your best friends from back in the day or family meal prep. Other strategies are group exercise opportunities; frequenting local shops and eateries where proprietors know your name and ask questions about your welfare; volunteering in your community or through your religious institution and adopting a companion pet.