5 Tips to Uplift Yourself if You’re Feeling Lonely Right Now

Older woman smiling looking to the side
Older woman smiling looking to the side

In today’s fast-paced world, where connections often exist more in the digital realm than in the physical, feelings of loneliness can creep in unexpectedly. 

Somehow, that vast network of friends on Facebook just doesn’t seem to satisfy your need for connection…

Loneliness can affect anyone, from the most socially active to those living more solitary lives. 

If you find yourself wrestling with the pangs of solitude, know that you’re actually not alone in feeling alone. 

Today, we want to share some heartfelt strategies to combat loneliness

But first, let’s acknowledge a common adversary in our journey toward fulfillment: the shadow of isolation. 

Just as perfectionism and fear can hinder reaching our goals, loneliness can also act as a barrier to a vibrant, connected life. It’s crucial to address this feeling head-on and transform it into a stepping stone towards deeper self-awareness and community connection.

Here are 5 practical tips you can use to connect with your world in a more meaningful way.

Tip #1: Embrace Connection in All Forms

Diverse group of older friends smiling over drinks together

In moments of loneliness, remember the importance of proactive communication. 

If you haven’t heard from somebody you love in a long time, don’t dwell on the sadness—do something about it

Reach out to family and friends, even if it’s just for a quick chat. 

If you’re having trouble finding the right words, consider starting the conversation with a quick story about something that happened recently and how it reminded you of that person. 

A story can help break the ice and make the conversation more natural.

Social media and technology have made it easier than ever to stay in touch, but don’t underestimate the power of a handwritten letter or a spontaneous phone call. 

Connecting with others helps remind us of our place in the larger tapestry of life.

Try this two or three times, and you’ll find yourself in a completely different headspace.

Tip #2: Engage in Self-Reflection

Older woman writing in her journal at a coffee shop

Use this ‘alone time’ for self-reflection

Consider journaling your thoughts and feelings. This practice can offer insights into what brings you joy and fulfillment.

While friendly chats and lunches with friends will briefly satisfy your need for connection, you’ll need to understand the motivation behind that need to truly feel satisfied.

Achieving mental clarity is essential for self-reflection.

Tip #3: Cultivate a Hobby

Older woman painting

Diving into a new or long-forgotten hobby can be incredibly therapeutic and a powerful antidote to loneliness. 

Whether you paint, garden, play sports, or do anything in between, hobbies not only fill your time with meaningful activity but also open doors to new communities with similar interests. Mutual hobbies can help you feel more connected to others and break out of feelings of isolation, especially if you can do them in a group.

Moreover, hobbies offer a sense of purpose and accomplishment. Improving your skills or creating something beautiful boosts your self-esteem and confidence, ultimately leading to a more positive outlook on life.

When you have free time, instead of scrolling through social media, why not pick up that guitar or paintbrush? You never know where it may take you.

Tip #4: Volunteer Your Time

Woman volunteering reading to the elders

Volunteering is a profound way to connect with others and combat feelings of isolation. 

Psychology research suggests that giving to others can increase your own happiness.

Additionally, by contributing to causes you care about, you’ll not only make a difference in the world but also build connections with like-minded individuals. 

This act of service can be incredibly fulfilling and remind you of the impact one person can have on the lives of others.

Tip #5: Prioritize Your Wellbeing

Stonehenge Health Dynamic Mushrooms

Physical activity, a balanced nutritious diet, and adequate rest are foundational to our overall well-being and can influence our emotional health. 

No matter which outlet you choose to enhance your well-being set out with purpose and conviction for the best results. 

The goal is to get YOU to a better place, which may take time or investment, but don’t let daily life’s fast pace and stress distract from your goal. 

As you explore your inner landscape, consider incorporating natural supplements like Dynamic Mushrooms into your routine. The blend of Lion’s Mane, Cordyceps, Chaga, and Reishi supports cognitive health and mental clarity, potentially making your self-reflection sessions more fruitful.*

Incorporating Dynamic Mushrooms into your wellness regimen can also support your vitality, immune health, stress management, and mental clarity.* This will empower you to feel your best and engage more fully with the world around you.

Remember that loneliness is a common human experience, yet it doesn’t have to define your life. 

By embracing connection, engaging in self-reflection, cultivating new interests, volunteering, and prioritizing your well-being—with a little help from nature’s bounty, like Dynamic Mushrooms—you can navigate through and beyond the shadows of solitude. 

Let’s take these steps together, nurturing our minds, bodies, and spirits for a more connected and fulfilling tomorrow.


The Soaring Popularity of Birding: Is it the Next Big Thing?

pilated woodpecker
pilated woodpecker

It was a sunny morning when the birdwatching bug bit me. 

My brother John’s voice, tinged with inexplicable excitement, echoed, “Margo, you’ve got to see this!”

With the enthusiasm he was exuding, you’d think he’d spotted a mythical creature prancing in the backyard.

But no, it wasn’t a unicorn. Instead, nestled amongst the trees off his back porch was a Pileated Woodpecker.

This past July, I spent a few weeks in the heart of Central Pennsylvania as a guest at my brother John’s house. With his mild-mannered demeanor and bookish charm, John is a polymath – knowledgeable about virtually every topic yet never coming off as a know-it-all. He is genuinely the perfect kind of person.

His home, perched atop a hill and enveloped in a colorful blanket of trees, was a bustling bird metropolis.

The bird feeders John had scattered around his property acted like avian magnets. At first, I was prepared for a relaxingly monotonous week – which I was perfectly content with. But as it turned out, monotony was about to take flight!

The night following our woodpecker encounter, I dove headfirst into John’s birdwatching world. We pored over the Kaufman Field Guide to Birds of North America. As we flipped through the pages, I began to understand the allure of birdwatching. It wasn’t just about ticking off species from a list; it was a rewarding hobby with many unexpected perks.

Natural Stress Buster

Active senior woman using binoculars to see the beauty of nature

In the relentless whirl of life, taking a moment to sit quietly and observe birds was like a serene massage for my mind. It was calming and soothing, and I found myself basking in the tranquil charm of this peaceful pastime.

Digital Detox

Blue Jay

We’re so tethered to our screens that we often overlook the mesmerizing world beyond the pixels. Spotting a variety of birds, from barn owls to blue jays, feels like you’re rekindling a forgotten friendship with nature.

Brain Gym

happy middle aged couple bird watching outdoors

Birdwatching, or “birding” as it is affectionately known among enthusiasts, is more than just a delightful hobby; it’s a mental workout in disguise. Each time you embark on a birding adventure, you’re not just stepping into the great outdoors but walking into an open-air classroom that challenges and stimulates your mind.

When you spot a new bird, it’s like solving a complex puzzle. You must observe carefully, noting details such as the bird’s size, shape, color, behavior, and even its unique calls. These observations then need to be matched with the information available in field guides or birding apps, making the process an engaging exercise in problem-solving and memory recall.

In addition, each bird species comes with its own set of intriguing facts about its lifestyle, feeding habits, migration patterns, and habitat preferences. As you uncover these facts, you’re learning new things about nature, ecology, and animal behavior. It’s like attending a biology lecture with the added bonus of fresh air and real-time observations.

Make It Social

Seniors trekking in a forest

Birdwatching can serve as a fantastic social activity, providing an opportunity to connect with like-minded people who share a similar passion for nature. Joining local bird watching clubs and joining organized birding trips can lead to new friendships and enriching conversations. 

Fitness

Active senior couple hiking in mountains with backpacks and hiking poles, enjoying their adventure

Hiking up hills and meandering through wooded paths without realizing you’re breaking a sweat? Way more fun than a treadmill! By the end of the week, I found myself physically revitalized.

Today, I proudly identify myself as a “birder.” Interestingly, birding is not just a hobby favored by Boomers and Gen Xers like myself. It’s gaining traction among younger folks, too, proving that the appeal of birdwatching transcends age boundaries. 

As I look forward to many more birding adventures, I can’t help but feel excited about the future of this captivating hobby.

Sharpen Your Observation Skills*

Stonehenge Health Dynamic Mushrooms

The power of birdwatching extends far beyond simple observation. It stimulates cognitive enhancement, emotional well-being, stress relief, physical activity, and social engagement.

To support birdwatching’s emotional and physical benefits, consider incorporating adaptogenic mushrooms like those found in Stonehenge Health Dynamic Mushrooms into your daily routine.*

Dynamic Mushrooms combine Lion’s Mane, Reishi, Chaga, Maitake, and Shiitake. Each of these mushrooms has adaptogenic properties, contributing to cognitive performance, immune health, and the ability to adapt to stressful situations.* This comprehensive blend eliminates the need to source each ingredient individually, offering a full spectrum of adaptogenic benefits in one convenient mix.*

Aging with Grace: Our Top 5 Favorite Books for Cultivating Positivity

couple reading a book smiling
couple reading a book smiling

Life is an ever-evolving journey filled with transitions, and one of the most profound changes a person can experience is when their children leave for college, leaving behind an empty nest.

As a mother of two, I recently found myself at this pivotal crossroads, confronting a life transition that I initially approached with apprehension. The initial days following my children’s departure were undeniably challenging. Their rooms stood still, devoid of their laughter and youthful energy. The once-vibrant home now seemed eerily quiet. The profound sense of loss weighed heavily, and I yearned for their presence, missing their companionship, and grappling with feelings of sadness and nostalgia.

During this challenging period, I discovered profound inspiration and solace within Jay Shetty’s “Think Like a Monk: Train Your Mind for Peace and Purpose Every Day.” Shetty’s wisdom emphasized the significance of resilience in the face of adversity. Instead of fixating on the void left by my children’s absence, I embraced it as an opportunity for personal growth and rejuvenation. The book rekindled my awareness that true fulfillment arises from helping others, infusing me with hope. This transition wasn’t an end but a fresh start—an opportunity to rediscover the joys predating parenthood and explore uncharted interests, resonating with the teachings of “Think Like a Monk.”

Self-help books like “Think Like a Monk” can be invaluable allies in the pursuit of a more fulfilling and optimistic life. They offer essential guidance in nurturing a positive attitude, helping individuals navigate life’s transitions with resilience and hope.

1. “The Power of Now” by Eckhart Tolle

cover image of "the power of now"

As we age, we often dwell on the past or worry about the future. “The Power of Now” is a transformative guide to living in the present moment. Tolle’s teachings emphasize the importance of embracing the present, shedding the burdens of regret and anxiety that can weigh heavily on our minds.

The book offers practical exercises and spiritual insights that help readers disconnect from their ego-driven thoughts and embrace the peace and contentment that can be found in the now. By adopting this mindset, you can approach aging with a sense of acceptance and gratitude for the experiences each moment brings.

2. “Man’s Search for Meaning” by Viktor E. Frankl

cover image of "man's search for meaning"

“Man’s Search for Meaning” is a profound exploration of the human spirit’s resilience, even in the face of extreme suffering. Drawing from his experiences as a Holocaust survivor and psychiatrist, Viktor Frankl argues that finding meaning in life is essential, especially during challenging times.

Life transitions like retirement, an empty nest, or losing a loved one can trigger existential questions about your purpose. Frankl’s philosophy suggests that you create meaning through your attitudes and actions. This book inspires you to find purpose in your experiences and embrace life with a positive outlook at every step along the way.

3. “Think Like a Monk: Train Your Mind for Peace and Purpose Every Day” by Jay Shetty

cover image of "think like a monk"

“Think Like a Monk” is a transformative guide that offers invaluable wisdom for those navigating times of transition and seeking to promote positivity in their lives. Drawing from his experiences as a former monk, Shetty provides practical insights and exercises to help readers cultivate a resilient mindset.
The book delves into mindfulness, resilience, and the power of purpose, offering a roadmap to find inner peace and clarity during life’s upheavals. By emphasizing the importance of self-awareness, gratitude, and selfless service, “Think Like a Monk” equips you with the tools to approach transitions with a positive perspective. It’s a compelling read for anyone looking to navigate change, find purpose, and foster optimism in their journey.

4. “The Gifts of Imperfection” by Brené Brown

the cover image of "the gifts of imperfection"

 Older folks may feel pressured to hide their vulnerabilities in a world that frequently values youth and idealized images of beauty and success. Society also often imposes unrealistic expectations of perfection, so embracing your imperfections and cultivating self-compassion is essential. Brené Brown’s “The Gifts of Imperfection” celebrates the power of vulnerability and authenticity in living a wholehearted life.

“The Gifts of Imperfection” provides a roadmap to letting go of needing external validation and approval, allowing you to find fulfillment in your authentic self. By embracing imperfection and vulnerability, you’ll find you can maintain a positive attitude and a stronger sense of self-worth as you navigate the challenges and joys of aging.

5. “The Longevity Diet” by Valter Longo

cover image of "the longevity diet"

Valter Longo’s “The Longevity Diet” uniquely promotes a positive attitude toward aging by emphasizing the importance of nutrition and overall well-being. As we age, our bodies undergo various changes, and maintaining good health becomes paramount to enjoying life to the fullest.

Longo’s book offers insights into the science of aging and suggests that a well-balanced diet can significantly prolong a healthy life. By making informed dietary choices and adopting the principles of his longevity diet, you can take charge of your physical well-being, which can, in turn, have a positive impact on your attitude toward aging.

One More Tool for Cultivating a Positive Attitude

dynamic brain supplements on marble slab

In life, various transitions can damper your happiness, and one such transition is the natural process of age-related cognitive decline. Maintaining a positive attitude may become progressively more challenging as you encounter difficulties such as forgetting names, grappling with spatial orientation, or struggling to express yourself. However, it’s crucial to recognize that these challenges are a part of the human experience.

The good news is that you can effectively address these issues and boost your confidence through awareness and proactive steps. Just as the self-help books explored earlier provide invaluable insights for navigating life’s challenges with resilience and positivity, addressing age-related cognitive decline that’s part of the aging process is another chapter in this journey of self-improvement.

By seeking support and utilizing resources like memory-supporting supplements such as Stonehenge Health Dynamic Brain, you can continue on your path to positivity while knowing you are nourishing your brain and doing what you can to support your memory.*

Pursuing happiness is a lifelong journey, and every chapter, no matter how challenging, contributes to your personal growth and well-being.

* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

Musical Therapy: Top 7 Advantages of Music Listening

man relaxing listening to music from headphones
man relaxing listening to music from headphones

Whenever I hit writer’s block, it feels like running headfirst into an invisible wall. One minute, words are flowing like a river; the next, they’re barely a dribble. Sitting there, staring at the blank page, I’m just yearning for something – anything to kickstart my creativity.

That’s when I lean on my secret weapon: music. But not just any tunes—I’m talking about the kind that stirs your soul. For me, it’s all about Led Zeppelin. When the well of creativity dries up, I slip on my headphones and let the mighty rhythms of ‘Stairway to Heaven’ or the electrifying guitar riffs of ‘Ramble On’ take over. It’s like a floodgate opens, and words start pouring out, filling the page with a wave of inspiration. It’s an undeniable testament to the profound potency of music.

This is not a unique revelation but a shared experience. Music, the universal language, touches hearts worldwide, eliciting emotions, igniting creativity, and providing solace. But did you know that there’s ample scientific evidence corroborating the exceptional benefits of music on your mind, body, and overall existence?

So, let’s explore the benefits of listening to music, a universal language that can uplift, heal, and inspire.

1. Brain Power

abstract music note in the shape of brain

Music, particularly classical, can enhance cognitive performance and improve memory and learning. A study by the University of California, Irvine, revealed that Mozart’s music significantly enhanced college students’ spatial reasoning skills1.

This “Mozart Effect” suggests that classical music could potentially boost brainpower. Furthermore, music with a strong beat can stimulate brainwaves to resonate synchronously with the beat, resulting in heightened concentration and alert thinking.

2. Happiness

cheerful older couple dancing happy in the kitchen

Music can evoke a wide range of emotions. It can move us to tears, induce happiness, or energize us. The therapeutic use of music for managing mood issues is gaining popularity. Studies show music can help diminish anxiety and depression, elevate self-esteem, and enhance mood2.

3. Stress Less

close up image of violin being played

Music’s stress-relieving properties are well-established. Slow, quiet classical music can have a calming effect, slowing heart rate, reducing blood pressure, and decreasing stress hormone levels. A study published in the Journal of Advanced Nursing found that music can reduce anxiety in hospital patients3.

4. Sweeter Dreams

above view of older woman peacefully sleeping in bed

Listening to music before bed can significantly improve sleep quality. Soft, soothing tunes can slow down the heart rate and reduce anxiety, helping your body prepare for rest. Music has the power to distract from stressful thoughts, guiding you into a peaceful state of mind conducive to sleep.

Studies have shown that classical music, in particular, can promote better sleep patterns4. So, incorporating a calming playlist into your bedtime routine might be just what you need for a good night’s sleep.

5. Turbocharge Performance

active woman stretching listening to music through headphones outdoors

Music can also augment physical performance by enhancing endurance, improving movement and coordination, and accelerating recovery. Studies show that listening to music during exercise can delay fatigue and intensify workouts5. Many athletes use music as a stimulant before competition to boost their performance.

6. Deepen Connections

friends playing instruments in band

Music can foster social connections and create communities. Musical activities unite people, whether singing in a choir, dancing at a concert, party, event, or club, or playing in a band, fostering social cohesion and mutual understanding.

7. Creativity Burst

woman focused painting

Finally, music can stimulate creativity. It can open the mind to new ideas and perspectives, fostering imagination and innovation. Many artists and writers draw inspiration from music for their creative endeavors.

Adaptogen Driven Inspiration

close up image of Dynamic Mushrooms supplement with foliage and mushrooms in background

The power of music extends far beyond simple entertainment. It catalyzes cognitive enhancement, emotional health, stress relief, physical performance boost, social bonding, and creativity stimulation.

Regardless of your preference, be it classical symphonies, jazz improvisations, or rock anthems, immersing yourself in your favorite melodies can unlock countless benefits.

To further amplify music’s tranquility and emotional balance, consider integrating adaptogenic mushrooms like those found in Stonehenge Health Dynamic Mushrooms into your daily life. Various cultures have revered these functional mushrooms for their ability to cultivate emotional well-being and manage stress.* Dynamic Mushrooms combines Lion’s Mane, Reishi, Chaga, Maitake, and Shiitake. Each of these mushrooms possesses adaptogenic properties, contributing to cognitive performance and immune support, stress resilience, and quality sleep.*  This all-encompassing blend saves you the trouble of finding each ingredient, offering a full spectrum of adaptogenic benefits in one convenient blend.

Sources:
1. Rauscher FH, Shaw GL, Ky KN. Nature. 1993 Oct 14;365(6447):611.
2. Dyer SM, et al. Int Psychogeriatrics. (2018) 30:295–309.
3. Int J Nurs Stud. 2016 Nov;63:82-100.
4. Chen, C-T., et al. 2021. Journal of American Geriatrics Society.
5. Karageorghis, C.I., & Priest, D.L. (2012). International Review of Sport and Exercise Psychology, 5(1), 67-84
6. Why is music good for the brain? – Harvard Health | health.harvard.edu/blog/why-is-music-good-for-the-brain-2020100721062

* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.