How to Overcome Loneliness Once and For All

how to overcome loneliness
Can we really learn how to overcome loneliness once and for all?

Each month 135,000 people search the term ‘loneliness’ on Google.  Many of them are looking for how connect and overcome their isolation.  Loneliness is even harder to deal with if you have experienced what I call a Nobody’s Girl upbringing.  There may be many different problematic scenarios in your childhood that could have led you to feel like a Nobody’s Girl.  I myself had several of them in my background. I was an emotionally abandoned, unwanted child. Yet, I overcame those childhood wounds and married my best friend and soul mate. You can too.

In this third blog on how to overcome loneliness we are going to delve deeply into how to end the heartache of the Nobody’s Girl syndrome! We will look at how you can change your basic model of relating intimately by having a corrective and healing relationship that gives you what you never got growing up. Later in this post, we’ll meet Jo, a very successful research chemist, who overcame her loneliness and childhood wounds through mentoring.

Let’s call this specific type of mentoring, as Needs-Based Mentoring.  It’s designed to fill your unmet needs from childhood and correct your negative self-sabotaging beliefs. And these kinds of beliefs have led to the creation of loneliness and hopelessness-generating self-talk.


How to Overcome Loneliness: Secret Beliefs that Amplify Loneliness

  • Nobody wants me.
  • I’m too much for anyone to handle
  • You can only rely on yourself
  • I’m damaged goods
  • Everyone leaves me
  • I’ll always be alone
  • I don’t really need or want love in my life
  • I always screw up relationships

Yes, I know a number of these negative beliefs seem all too familiar to you. The critical thing to know about them is that they are just thoughts. Just thoughts based on how you were treated growing up. And you can change them. Close your eyes and take that in—you can change these beliefs!

Then, make a note of which ones seem to resonate with you the most. These are the ones that you can discuss with a Needs-Based Mentor, who will then help you to create affirmations that counter them and fill you with connection and hope for the future. So, for example, I deserve to be ignored or ghosted, can be countered with an affirmation like, I deserve to be attended to and chosen.

How to Overcome Loneliness: Where Did My Self-Sabotaging Beliefs Come From?

These loneliness-generating beliefs grow out of common background stories that you may have experienced growing up. They led to you knowing loneliness from an early age. Do any of these stories sound like your background?

  • Divorce war. Your needs got lost in the heat of your parents’ bitter divorce.
  • An unwanted pregnancy. You were an accident or a late life surprise.
  • Not the right gender. Your parents desperately wanted a boy.
  • Young parents. Your parents had you when they were young, self-absorbed or still partying.
  • Shuffled off. You were raised by sitters or daycare workers who were too burdened to take delight in you.
  • Favorite child wins all. Your sibling is the golden child or is sickly/needy and took all of your parents’ time and attention.
  • Addict parents. Your parents were workaholics or addicted to drugs or alcohol.
  • Illness or death. One or both parents were mentally/physically ill or died.

The most important themes include being unplanned, unwanted, and/or uncared for. The lingering effect is then you’re relating to people you tend to feel left out, ignored, invisible or like a second class citizen. In a social situation you feel like you can’t win out over other women. They have the “right stuff’ and you don’t. You don’t have a strong self-loving female identity.

I myself was the wrong gender—a fifth daughter born to a Sicilian family that only wanted a boy. My father said, “Oh, another girl, I don’t want to go to the hospital!” You get the idea. And so I grew up as a Nobody’s Girl. With lots of self-sabotaging beliefs. But there was so much more to me, just waiting to blossom.

Just like there is so much more to you than you realize!

How to Overcome Loneliness: Your Background Stories Had Nothing to Do with You!

First off, I want you to notice that not one of these background situations truly had anything to do with you. With who you really are.

Then, notice that it all had to do with your parents. Not you.

Finally, note there’s no blame here just the almost inevitable outcome of bad fortune.

So these negative beliefs that you took on, were erroneous. Pure, plain and simple. It was NOT about you! You are a singularly unique, being, a child of the divine, who has her own wonderful gifts and talents. A learner, a seeker—I know because you are reading this right now. You are special, just for being who you are! BTW this is how a Needs-Based Mentor talks to you. In a corrective healing way—even if you don’t believe it at first. But over time reality-based appreciation and validation sink in.

In fact, this is how I overcame my Nobody’s Girl syndrome. I internalized validation from a mentor, a coach who noticed and appreciated me in a way that was real and inspiring. I had a new kind of healing relationship in which I got attention, and felt special and fully appreciated! Imagine if you had that, just for a moment. A fairy godmother, a real live one, comes into your life and gives you the kind of validating experience that is exactly the opposite of the way you grew up! What would that feel like? Different? Great? Like you are not alone?

Once again, this is what happened for me! Therefore, it can happen for you.

How to Overcome Loneliness: Rebooting Your Childhood and New Self-Talk (This is not a typo)

It’s really true that we can all go home again metaphorically and get some of the caring and appreciation we missed out on. In fact, you’ve already taken the first step in transcending your Nobody’s Girl programming from childhood by reading these blogs! By now you have looked at all the different dynamics holding you back. And you are beginning to understand that you’re NOT simply stuck with your childhood script and negative self-talk for the rest of your life.

The next big step is going home again and giving yourself the happy childhood you wanted. But in order to rewrite that script, you need to find mentors, people who are like fairy godmothers to you, who can right the wrongs that have happened in your past. To help you actualize the affirmations you want to live by. To help you find the love that meets the calling of your heart.

How to Overcome Loneliness Through Mentoring

Your mentor needs to be someone who knows about your warts or pimples yet sees the beauty, the poetry, the soul in you. Indeed, this is someone who believes in you and sees your attractiveness and your unique lovable qualities.  And, a person who gives you advice and encouragement to go beyond your fears. In particular, this person already experiences you as deserving and successful at love. So in that way, your mentor holds the future vision of you fulfilled as if it is happening right now.

So think through your social network for who could be like a fairy godmother to you. For example, candidates can include good aunts, stepparents, 12-step sponsors, life coaches, therapists, ministers, rabbis, or growth course leaders among others. When you find someone, ask them to have lunch or coffee with you regularly and to help you with your journey to love and self love.

And if by chance, there is no one in your network, definitely go ahead and have a gift session with one of my coaches to get started. In fact, they are all trained in Need-based Mentoring and they truly are like living fairy godmothers.


How to Overcome Loneliness: Jo’s Breakthrough to Love

Due to my parents’ horrendous divorce, I always felt like a Nobody’s Girl. I felt like  I didn’t deserve love. As a result, I didn’t date much, and buried myself in my work as a research chemist. I was very lonely. Finally, at 39, I realized that I might never become a mom. And that I needed to take action.

The coaching was different that any experience I ever had—it was amazing to have a sacred safe space, to be understood, to be valued, to be encouraged and inspired! I also learned a lot about my background and how to get what I really needed. There are so many wonderful things I could say about being mentored, but the most incredible experience was getting the mothering I never had. You helped me to see that it is possible to find love and that I deserve so much more than I believed. And now I’m dating a guy who really cares for me—in a way that I never ever experienced before. And he just proposed! I can’t thank you enough!

So there is your recipe for how to overcome loneliness! Like Jo and like me, you can do it!


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I'm a PBS Love expert and psychologist who has appeared on Oprah, the Today Show and in an Amazon Prime show, Love in 90 Days based on my bestseller Love in 90 Days.  My work has been featured in The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, ABC, People, and NPR.

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