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Reaching Out!

Sometimes it's not easy to reach out to someone for help. Yet the sooner you do the better you feel!

“Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid." Albert Einstein

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“No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it.” Albert Einstein
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Let's Talk

Dr. Darlene DeStefano, PhD

     

LONELY IN RURAL WELLINGTON

Posted 4/29/2016

Dear Darlene,

     I’m stuck. I have just moved to this community about six months ago. Totally settled in my new place with everything the way I want it except I have not made any friends. I’m wondering if I have made a mistake moving here. Having recently separated and moving 

away from all my family and friends, the loneliness is just starting to set in. I go to work but then after work and on weekends there’s nothing. I went to the local Pub a couple of times but other than sitting there and having a drink not much happened and the result was that it didn’t help me feel any better. I don’t want to move back to where I moved from but I am feeling really isolated. What should I do?

Signed: Lonely in Rural Wellington

 

Dear Lonely in Rural Wellington,

 Moving and starting all over is not an easy task for most people and if you are a bit reserved or find it difficult to approach others first, it can be a serious problem. The best way to survive the emotional toll of a recent move is to get out into your new community, get involved and make friends. 

Here are some tips for finding new friends without having to step too far outside your comfort zone. Just think about it, you are surrounded by people and many of whom are also open to meeting new people and making new friends.

You said you are working so start with work. Whom do you gravitate toward? Why not invite that person to join you for lunch, or a coffee/drink after work.  Since you work together, there is already a number of conversation ideas that could be of interest.

Meet your neighbours. You can do the old “Could I borrow an egg or 1/2 cup of sugar??” This is always an ice breaker. When you return the item ask them to join you for a coffee.

Do you play a sports? Do you enjoy doing crafts, paint, dance? There are a number of community resources and recreational programs full of people also looking to make new friends and stay active. Oftentimes these events are followed by dinner or drinks. Check the Internet and chamber of commerce for recreational teams and groups in your area.

Another place to get involved and make new friends is with a group of passionate, like-minded people. You could find a local church to meet people that are seeking similar things. 

Volunteering is a great way to meet others who are intent on making a difference. Even if you don't meet potential close friends, it will feel great getting out and getting your mind off of being in a new community and not being lonely.

Moving is a wonderful adventure full of new possibilities. Give yourself the best chance of acclimating to your new town, by getting as active and involved as possible. 

 Identify the things you like to do and are interested in and then seek out other people doing the same thing will ease the loneliness and give you maximum enjoyment for your fresh start.

Additional Tips: -

Don't look back. Look forward. Start by seeking out a new hair salon, a new dentist & doctor & other service providers. By so doing, you are making a statement for permanent residency.

Shop at local merchants whenever possible rather than go out of town. Local retailers are friendly people with a wealth of information to share. They welcome new customers with open arms.

Refrain from constantly returning on weekends to where you came from but rather use that time to learn about local history in your new environment.

Last, but not least, read every local paper you can get your hands on each week. You will learn about local events, local business developments & names of ordinary people like yourself who make your new community  a great place to live.

Live Well,
Darlene DeStefano, PhD, CPC, MMsc