9 things you don’t realize you’re doing because you’re lonely

We often talk about feeling lonely, like it’s this big, scary thing. But what about the small everyday stuff we do when we’re feeling that way?

You might be surprised to find out that loneliness can make us do certain things without even realizing.

Let’s dive into 9 things you’re probably doing because you’re lonely.

1. You’re Spending Too Much Time on Social Media

Ever find yourself mindlessly scrolling through Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter for hours on end?

While it’s perfectly normal to want to stay connected with friends and the world, excessive time on social media could be a sign that you’re feeling lonely.

Social media can give us the illusion of being socially connected when, in reality, we’re just observers in other people’s lives.

This digital connection can’t replace real-life human interaction.

If you’ve been spending more time with your screen than with real people, it might be time to step back and reevaluate things.

It’s okay to unplug. Sometimes, a little digital detox can do wonders for your mental wellbeing. 

2. You’re Overeating or Under-eating

Have you been raiding the fridge more often than usual? Or perhaps you’ve lost your appetite and are skipping meals? Changes in eating habits can often be a sign of loneliness.

When we’re feeling down, we sometimes turn to food for comfort – that’s why they call it comfort food!

On the other hand, some of us lose our appetite altogether.

If you notice these changes, it’s important to tackle the root cause: your feelings of loneliness.

Don’t worry; we’re here with you in this journey. Remember, it’s perfectly okay to seek help when you need it.

Keep an eye on your eating habits and try to maintain a balanced diet for a healthier body and mind. 

3. You’re Procrastinating More Than Usual

I’ll be the first one to confess; when I was at my loneliest, my to-do list would just keep growing and growing. I was procrastinating like never before.

Maybe you’ve noticed this too. You’re delaying tasks you’d normally tackle head-on, or you’re putting off making important decisions.

You might think it’s just laziness or lack of motivation, but it could actually be a sign that you’re feeling lonely.

I realized that when I felt alone, I found it hard to motivate myself to get things done.

It was easier to ignore my responsibilities than to face them.

But trust me, overcoming the urge to procrastinate can actually make you feel much better in the long run.

4. You’re Watching Excessive Amounts of TV or Movies

Ever found yourself binge-watching an entire series in one go? Or maybe you’ve watched the same movie again and again.

While it’s okay to unwind with some screen time, excessive TV or movie watching could be a sign of loneliness.

People who feel lonely are more likely to use TV shows or movies as a form of escapism and companionship. It’s almost like the characters on screen become our friends.

But remember, there’s a whole world out there filled with real people and real experiences.

So next time you reach for the remote, why not reach out to an old friend instead?

You might just find a beautiful connection waiting for you.

5. You’re Sleeping a Lot More (or Less) Than Usual

Sleep, that beautiful escape where our worries can’t touch us.

But when we’re feeling lonely, our sleep patterns can take a turn for the worse.

Perhaps you’ve been sleeping more than usual, using it as a refuge from the world.

Or maybe you’re having trouble switching off your thoughts at night and you’re getting less sleep than you need.

Sleep is our body’s way of healing and regenerating. It’s a vital part of our overall well-being.

But when loneliness creeps in, it can disrupt this healing process.

If you’ve been experiencing changes in your sleep pattern, it’s essential to address the issue at its core – your loneliness.

Remember, it’s okay to reach out and ask for help when you’re feeling low.

You deserve restful nights and peaceful dreams, and you don’t have to face this alone.

You are stronger than your loneliness, and there are people who care about your well-being. Reach out to them, share your feelings – it can make a world of difference.

6. You’re Shopping More Than Usual

I remember a time when I was feeling particularly lonely, and I found myself constantly browsing online stores.

Before I knew it, I was buying things I didn’t even need. At first, it felt good – like a temporary distraction from my feelings. But then the guilt of unnecessary spending kicked in.

Maybe you’ve noticed this too. You’re buying more stuff, whether online or in physical stores. And it’s not just the essentials; you’re splurging on things that you don’t really need.

If this sounds familiar, it might be a sign that you’re trying to fill the void of loneliness with material possessions.

It took me a while to realize this about myself. But once I did, I was able to curb my shopping habits and focus on addressing my feelings of loneliness.

And guess what? You can do it too! Instead of hitting ‘add to cart’, try reaching out to a friend or loved one. It’s much more rewarding in the long run.

7. You’re Ignoring Calls and Texts

When you’re lonely, sometimes the last thing you want to do is talk to someone. It sounds backwards, right? But it happens. I know it because I’ve been there too.

You see your phone light up with a message or a call, but you just ignore it. You tell yourself you’ll respond later, but you never do.

In fact, you might even feel a sense of dread at the thought of having to interact with someone.

This kind of social withdrawal is a classic sign that you’re feeling lonely.

You might be thinking that it’s easier to isolate yourself than risk feeling more alone after a conversation.

But isolation only feeds your loneliness.

Believe me when I say – people care about you. Those calls and texts are proof of that.

So next time your phone rings, give it a shot. Answer the call or reply to that text. It might be hard, but every little step counts in overcoming loneliness.

8. You’re Overthinking Everything

I get it. When I’ve felt lonely, my mind seemed to go into overdrive. I started overthinking everything – replaying past conversations, stressing about the future, and even doubting my decisions.

Maybe you’re experiencing this too. You find yourself stuck in a loop of negative thoughts and what-ifs.

This overthinking can make you feel even more isolated and disconnected from the world around you.

But let me tell you from personal experience – overthinking doesn’t change anything. It only drains your mental energy and makes you feel worse.

It’s not easy to break free from this cycle, but recognizing that you’re doing it is the first step.

Try to focus on the present moment and remind yourself that it’s okay not to have everything figured out.

9. You’re Neglecting Self-Care

When we’re lonely, it’s easy to forget about taking care of ourselves. I mean, who’s going to notice if you haven’t showered for a couple of days or if you’ve been wearing the same clothes?

But trust me, neglecting self-care only makes things worse.

You might stop doing the things you usually love – maybe you’ve stopped reading your favorite books, or you’re no longer playing that instrument that used to bring you joy.

Remember, you are important. You matter. And taking care of yourself is not just about looking good on the outside; it’s about feeling good on the inside.


If some or all of these points resonate with you, remember – it’s okay to feel this way. But it’s also important to know that there are people out there who care about you and want to help. Reach out to them, or seek professional help if need be.

And remember, loneliness is not a permanent state. It can change. It will change. So hang in there and take care of yourself!

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Picture of Lachlan Brown

Lachlan Brown

I’m Lachlan Brown, the editor of Ideapod and founder of Hack Spirit. I love writing practical articles that help others live a mindful and better life. I have a graduate degree in Psychology and I’ve spent the last 6 years reading and studying all I can about human psychology and practical ways to hack our mindsets. If you to want to get in touch with me, hit me up on Twitter or Facebook.

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