DEALING WITH LONELINESS: THE LONELINESS CHRONICLES

Human connection is an essential need for survival. We will always crave a sense of belonging, and, because of this, when we cannot satisfy this need, a feeling of loneliness is inevitable.

Now, I hate to be a cliche, but a time where I felt the most alone was when my three-year relationship came to an end. My ex-partner was a kind person, but we weren’t good for each other. At that point in my life, any spare time I had was dedicated to my significant other, which meant that I neglected my relationships with friends, family, and myself. When we broke up, I had to face a harsh reality that I didn’t have much of a life beyond our relationship. So for the first time, in a long time, I was alone — and I was lonely.

I’ll spare you the details of a very long sob story, but going through this specific season of loneliness left me with a lot of life lessons that I feel compelled to share with my fellow vinas. Here’s what did and didn’t work for me:

WHAT DIDN’T HELP:

  1. Isolating Myself – Yeah, this one seems obvious, haha. If you’re feeling alone, isolation would be counterproductive. When I was feeling lonely, I thought my best bet was to “tough it out,” but this only validated the fear that I was alone and didn’t deserve love.
  2. Meaningless Hookups – I am all for recreational sex with whoever, whenever. What I don’t recommend is seeking physical relationships to fill the void caused by loneliness. This was my go-to M.O. every time I was craving intimacy, but temporary solutions don’t fix long-term problems. When I sought out partners for this purpose, I was always left feeling emptier than before.
  3. Alcohol – I went on a three-month-long bender of going out to the bars and clubs at any given opportunity. Translation, I was filling the void yet again, but this time with too much alcohol. Your objective of a fun evening out shouldn’t be to drink until you don’t feel anything anymore.

WHAT DOES HELP:

  1. Reaching Out – Initially, it was really hard to reach out to my loved ones. I felt that because I neglected our friendships that it would be insulting to try and lean on them for support. I’m glad that I didn’t listen to that voice for long because I would have missed out on some really great moments with my friends. These people provided me with the reassurance I needed the get out of the dark place I was in. In the long run, reconnecting with those I cared about has taught me to be a much better friend in return.
  2. Creating New Relationships – Alongside the rebuilding of my current relationships, I also made it a point to try and meet new people. It was extremely daunting to put myself out there, but it was a necessary step to self-healing. Also, shameless app plug, but that’s actually how I stumbled upon Hey! VINA! Nothing brings two vinas together more than a broken heart.
  3. Doing Things I Loved & Trying Out New Things – In my relationship, I neglected a lot of my personal hobbies that used to bring me a lot of joy. Now that I had more time for myself, I decided to pick them back up. I got back into reading, attending story slams, and traveling. It also gave me a chance to try out things that always wanted to do painting (I wasn’t very good at it). Filling up my calendar with things to do meant I didn’t have much time to dwell upon the loneliness. Which brings me to my next item:
  4. Being Kind to Myself – A lot of the loneliness I was feeling was fueled by negative self-talk, which is why it was unsettling to be by myself. I had to learn to change the narrative and replace my harsh words with affirming ones. This isn’t easy for anyone, but sentences like, “I am deserving of love” or “I have an amazing support system that cares for me” made all the difference.
  5. Embracing Solitude – Not to be confused with isolation, but it’s important to solidify your relationship with yourself. How you go about it will be different for everyone. For me, sometimes it meant taking days off to sit in bed and read or dedicate a day to pampering myself. Time to time, I’d make plans to travel and explore new cities with me, myself, and I. This opportunity for quietness, peace, and self-reflection lead to such clarity and self-growth. After all, being alone doesn’t have to mean being lonely.

Unfortunately, loneliness doesn’t have an expiration date. You might have many periods of loneliness in your lifetime, but I hope that this list gives you some insight on how to tackle it. Just remember vinas, you may feel lonely, but you’re never alone.

Don’t be afraid to reach out and make new friends. Download the Hey! VINA app today to do so!

ADULTING CHECKLIST: 5 THINGS YOU SHOULD BE DOING

Let’s be honest, being an adult can suck sometimes. The bills, the responsibilities, the assumed maturity (that you don’t necessarily have nailed down yet), the expectations, and, oh, did I forget to mention the bills?! What happened to the days of only having to worry about a homework assignment, or who kissed who behind the bleachers, or “when is homecoming again?” There are times when all I want to do is forget my name and play Nintendo all day (I know, I totally just dated myself).

But there are times when it’s completely amazing as well! Like being in your own space, with your own things, and having whatever you want in the refrigerator! If I want to live on Cheetos for the rest of my life, I can! You can’t beat watching a friend marry the love of their life, but it’s not something you get to see much when you’re 16.

Good, bad or frustrating, growing up is unavoidable. Some still pretend to be teenagers – I won’t name names to protect the guilty – but we all change with the seasons and move forward (even if only chronologically). We all have our own toolkit to help us navigate these changes, but there are a few things that every adult should be doing:

1. LEARNING TO BE QUIET

Our entire day is filled with talking, explaining, sharing, interacting and presenting. The act of being quiet not only helps us reset our minds but also allows us to be introspective. Emotional intelligence is highly underrated, and being in a quiet space develops and cultivates your inner voice.

2. BEING FINANCIALLY RESPONSIBLE

Granted, we’re all poor when we graduate, but learning to be responsible with the little you have now will help you build habits when you get that first fat paycheck! Financial health follows you your entire career and retirement thereafter, so it’s important to pay attention early.

3. PURSUING YOUR PASSIONS

Do you remember what you wanted to be at age 5? A veterinarian? A doctor? A lawyer? I wanted to be an Egyptologist! Super random, I know, but somewhere along the way life took over and that dream faded. I’m still curious about the way ancients lived, but working in finance, the two worlds don’t really collide. So instead, I’m following that passion by traveling as much as I possibly can.

Don’t let adult responsibilities be your excuse for losing sight of that joy. Find an alternative way to tap into the kid that used to jump out of trees (maybe that was just me) or treat all your sick stuffed animals with Band-Aids and wraps.

4. PRIORITIZING YOUR HEALTH

Healthy is the new sexy. We’re not all supermodels, and what’s healthy for me isn’t necessarily healthy for you, but we all know what healthy FEELS like. I don’t care if you think you’re “slim-thick,” “rail-thin,” somewhere in between, or no definition applies (I actually prefer to avoid categorical self-identifiers. We’re all beautiful!), being healthy is mandatory. As women, we often take care of others before taking care of ourselves. Ladies, put yourself first and take care of you. We can’t be there for our families and friends if we’re in the hospital or worse. Me Time is REAL!!

And last, but certainly not least:

5. KNOW YOUR WORTH

This is across the board! Not just at work, in friendships or in relationships. We are beautiful, strong women and deserve to be treated as such. Knowing who you are and what you contribute is an invaluable feeling that holds so much weight. When you know your worth, you won’t tolerate being treated as anything less. Self-esteem is a huge issue for many teenaged and adult women who don’t know their worth. Remember who you are and how wonderful you are. Never let anyone smother that fire that you have.

It can be rough being an adult, and there are days when we’d all like to be back on the playground. But to be honest, there’s a reason I blocked out high school, and no amount of money could EVER make me go back there. So for now, I’ll take being able to travel whenever I want to (in accordance with my work calendar that is), come home to a quiet house with my Cheetos and enjoy staying out past curfew! Something tells me that you feel the same.

If you’re looking for some new vinas to conquer adulting (and brunching) with, start swiping on Hey! VINA today!

THE VINA GUIDE TO LOVING YOURSELF

February—better known as “the month of love“—has had us ladies fantasizing about all things relationships, flowers, chocolates, romantic evenings and wine related. However, I have one question for you: What’s more special than celebrating a love that is deeper than the seas, a love that is as loyal as it comes, a love that has been there since day one, a love that lasts a lifetime? AKA, SELF-LOVE.

Now I know this new trendy epidemic of self-love looks really appealing on social media—filled with facemasks, bubble baths, aromatherapy and so on—which I’m totally not knocking, I love it! But to really love yourself is to really put the work in. Luckily, us vina gals are empowered to make a difference in our lives, so let’s get through this guide together, okay?

1) TO LOVE THYSELF, IS TO PUT THYSELF FIRST

When was the last time you put yourself first? For some of us, it isn’t that easy. We might be people-pleasers, draining our own energy to be there for others. Some of us might be mothers, some of us might work three jobs just to get by, but have you heard of the word “self-preservation”? There comes a time where we need to literally say “enough is enough” and admit that you need some me time. And that is totally okay! Preserve some time every day, whether it’s an hour or 10 minutes, and just do what you and your body need at that moment. Give yourself some space to rejuvenate!

2) SWITCH THE NARRATIVE: SPEAK WELL TO YOURSELF. SPEAK UP FOR YOURSELF

How many of us know how to take a compliment, without answering it back with a bit of belittlement about ourselves? How many of us compliment others, without ever complimenting ourselves? If we continue to talk down to ourselves, talk ourselves out of opportunities, feel worthless or inadequate, believe what others view us as, we will truly live that narrative. So, switch it up! Speak powerfully and presently to yourself: “I am beautiful, I am successful, I am living a wonderful, happy life.” When we speak in the present moment, our minds will start believing it. Find power even in your weaknesses. Be patient with yourself. You are what you think, so make it a good thought 😉 Another ritual of self-love is speaking up for yourself. Saying “no” more often to please yourself doesn’t make you a bad person, it makes you a smart person who knows what you want and aren’t afraid to express it. Speaking up even when your voice shakes is a great form of self-love.

3) STOP COMPARING YOURSELF TO OTHERS + VALUE YOURSELF

Paola shared a drawing with you 24

You saw the memes, the quotes, the “new year, new me” resolutions and this for sure was one of them. So, stop comparing, start valuing! Value your mind, value your heart, value your ideas, value what makes you unique and stand out, value your body which protects you, moves you, allows you to experience the world, and loves you even through your own self-criticism. Your value is more than a physical attribute, it goes deeper than that. “I hated my way into loving myself,” said no one ever! No one can get to a place of happiness without accepting what is. And if I can be your hype-woman for a second: what you are, right in this moment, is so beautiful, colorful, vibrant and unique! Value everything that makes you, you. The only person you should compare yourself to is who you were yesterday.

4) END ALL TOXIC RELATIONSHIPS—ASAP

There is just no time for us ladies to be consumed by relationships that make us feel anything less than amazing. Did you know that toxic relationships can cause energy depletion, stress and anxiety, low self-esteem, fatigue, lack of concentration and a weak immune system? Relationships should uplift you, make you want to do better, feel motivated to achieve your goals, and you should feel like you have a supportive partner all the way! If you are experiencing the opposite of that, then it’s best to cut the cord, move on and rise up! Don’t let anyone hold you down. You know what you need for you, deep down.

5) SURROUND YOURSELF WITH GOOD VINAS!

So, this one kind of goes with number 4, but it needs to be said! By surrounding yourself with people who believe in you, support you, want to see you do great things and push you to be your best self, that energy can only raise you up and enhance your best self. Good friends, good memories, good food are all a wonderful part of wellness and self-love. Find the gal gang you need over at Hey! VINA to start building that loving circle. 

6) LET GO OF THE PAST, SAY HELLO TO YOUR BRIGHT FUTURE

Past traumas, heartbreaks, wounds, grudges can be very hard to let go of, and this might be a step that needs some extra support from someone you trust. But by knocking down the walls that bound you—that have left you with some resentment or anger in your heart—we can unload the burdens that, in fact, might be holding us back from truly living our best lives. You know you deserve better. Your future deserves better. So why not give the gift of letting go and putting to rest the past to make for an even better future?

7) DON’T WAIT FOR SOMEONE TO CHOOSE YOU, CHOOSE YOURSELF

For our vinas who are single hoping to mingle for Valentine’s day, remember that just because you’re single doesn’t mean you aren’t worthy of love! You are the best gift you could give yourself! So let’s get cheesy with our social media posts of self-love rituals and bubble baths with a glass of champagne. Give some MAJOR sensual self-love and show off how loving ourselves hasn’t been easy, but is so worth it in the end. You deserve the world.

So vinas, be good to yourself, push through limiting beliefs, your time is now to radiate! Check out Hey! Vina to empower other women and to start loving yourself.

THE ANCIENT WONDERS OF YONI STEAMING

FIRST THING’S FIRST. . . WHAT IS YONI STEAMING?

Yoni is a Sanskrit word meaning “vagina,” “womb,” or “origin of life.” Yoni steaming is the ritual of gently cleansing and healing your vagina by allowing the warmth permeate the vagina, cervix, uterus and entire reproductive system. The yoni steam is usually infused with healing herbs which are activated through the steam. That steam is believed to physically detox but also is thought to emotionally detox your body and womb as well. Many women hold traumas within their womb and if we don’t take the time to heal past-traumas, our womb will keep re-birthing our traumas in different ways. Emotionally and spiritually, yoni steaming can be thought of as ridding the womb of the harmful energies that enter or get “stuck” there. Yoni steaming is a great form of self-love and re-connecting to your femininity and womanly intuition.

THE V-STEAM TREND

Yoni steaming has made some controversial headlines over the past few years ever since Gwyneth Paltrow preached about its benefits in her Lifestyle mag, Goop. She received backlash as gynecologists and doctors alike claimed it can harm your the vagina and can cause bacterial infections. Although others claimed it can actually heal bacterial infections, as with any natural remedy use with caution and at your own discretion. Do not yoni steam while pregnant, during heavy menstruation, or if you have open sores. Take out any genital piercings before attempting yoni steaming. If you are suffering from a severe bacterial infection, consult with your physician before yoni steaming.

photo-1510064189423-ea9cbb7d2660

WHERE DID IT ORIGINATE?

Yoni steaming has been practiced in many ancient, indigenous cultures around the world! While some may think of it as taboo, it’s actually an ancient forgotten wisdom used by medicine women in African, Asian and Mayan cultures. In modern times, it’s growing in popularity in the West.

HEAD TO A SPA OR TO DIY?

Now offered at exclusive day spas, yoni steams can be found in most major cities, especially our bohemian city of Los Angeles. Simply research yoni steaming near you to find a Yoni Practitioner in your area. If you’re feeling a bit more introverted and want to do it yourself it can be done, but please be cautious, we don’t want anyone to burn themselves dealing with a bowl of steaming water!

So now you might be thinking, well how do I get that bowl of steaming water below my yoni anyway? Unless you’re skilled at wood-working and can whip up a little seat with a hole to allow the steam to actually reach your yoni – you may want to consider checking out ETSY for a Yoni Steam Seat or if you’re balling on a budget, there is an alternative; one that might seem a bit gross but highly effective and used by many other goddesses like yourself, known as “the porcelain throne!”

FROM TOILET TO THRONE

To make this experience feel a bit more pleasant and a lot less “yuck” you might want to consider giving your toilet a good scrub and making your bathroom more Zen-like. It’s always good to cleanse your sacred space – whether you decide to use your bathroom or not before steaming so you can feel more at peace.

A good scrub, a little sage, some incense and candles, meditation music, a good book or diary to write about your experience, a wide-rimmed stainless steel or glass mixing bowl and a cozy blanket and pair of socks – all to keep the warmth within!

Place your selected herbs into your pot, pour the water over while visualizing the benefits of your V-steaming. Bring to a boil and then simmer for about 10 minutes- this is important as it will bring out the healing properties of the herbs’ essential oils. Pour your steaming water into your separate yoni steaming bowl, place the bowl into your toilet and let sit for a few minutes to be sure not to burn your sensitive vulva tissues!

Once your all cozy seated and wrapped in your blanket, the steaming should last about a good 25-30 minutes. This is when your inner yogi-goddess comes out to play! Go inward during this journey, meditate, read and journal. Start your ritual off with a positive affirmation and intention.

Allow yourself to BE during this time. Whatever comes up for you, let it flow and let it release. Fill yourself with only the things that benefit you.

WHAT HERBS FOR WHAT?

There are many different herbs to use–you can use one type or mix a bunch together! It is best to use your intuition when selecting the right herbs, but research can also help!

Lavender naturally relaxes you and releases stress, while regulating your menstrual cycle! It’s also great for women suffering from PMS and mood swings. Mugwort is anti-fungal and anti-bacterial, essential for women who are suffering from bacterial infections, heavy discharge and yeast. This herb can also benefit women suffering from PCOS, fibroids, infertility, and hormonal imbalances. Calendula is an anti-inflammatory herb which heals scar tissue, helps release trauma, and relieves hemorrhoids and constipation. Throw in some rose petals for extra beauty from the inside and out! Rose petals are known to uplift and calm your yoni. Enjoy your pampering session, vinas!

Healing is best when surrounded by positive vinas! Start swiping on Hey! VINA to find your friends today!

LET’S TALK SUICIDE: HOW TO BE THERE FOR A VINA IN NEED

September is National Suicide Prevention Month, and while I am thankful for those acknowledging this crisis, it also hits quite close to home for me. As three of my closest friends have attempted suicide and I have had to talk my one friend out of self-harm, this issue is more than just a topic in the paper. Suicide might be uncomfortable for some to talk about, including myself, but the more we are made aware of this subject, the better we can help those struggling during times of need. Here are some suggestions on how you can be there for your vinas who need your support.

LET THEM KNOW THEY ARE NOT ALONE

The main thing that I make sure all my vinas know is that I’m there for them: day or night. Whether they need to talk or need someone to walk home with them, it’s vital that they know they have a friend they can count on. Mental illness can sometimes make us believe we are all alone, so if you have a friend or family member who may be contemplating self-harm, let them know their emotions are being acknowledged and most importantly, noticed. If you can offer an ear to listen and shoulder to lean on, that makes a huge difference.

OUTDOOR BENEFITS

I constantly give my friends suggestions about the latest Netflix comedy special that can brighten up their mood or a cool activity they can do with others. If your vina seems to be a bit down, see if you can get her out of the house and into nature. The outdoors and sunshine are very beneficial! Vitamin D is essential for our mental well-being and the best way to get some is by enjoying a little sunshine. It doesn’t matter if it’s a quick walk to get some ice cream or a short stroll through the park, your vina needs to get out of the house where her insecurities hide in the shadows. Some fresh air can go a long way.

SELF-CARE

In the midst of being a female, I think all of us females can agree sometimes our hormones get the best of us, and not giving enough back to ourselves, self-love and care need to be practiced. A little reflection while meditating can really help you get to the root of what is going on within. Maybe going out to a yoga class isn’t ideal for your vina at the moment, but in the age of the internet-you can pop a basic yoga video on your laptop and do it together in the comfort of your own home.

photo-1465711403138-162e171bb7e4

PATIENCE

It is very important that you take your time with a vina. It may seem time consuming and repetitive, but your vina needs you now more than ever. A funny gif here, a good meme there, a well-placed trip to the movies, or an occasional walk … no matter how small it may seem to you, it could mean the world to your vina.

Remember: There are many resources available to provide support to those affected by suicide. If someone you know needs help, suggest these resources immediately:

  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK or text “Talk” to 741741.
  • Crisis Text Line — Text START to 741741
  • TREVOR Project — 866-488-7386
  • Trans Lifeline — 877-565-8860

Of course, new vinas are always waiting to talk. Click here to start your friendship journey.

 

 

VINAS, IT’S TIME TO SHOOT YOUR (PROFESSIONAL) SHOT

Vinas, 2018 has been our year. Never before have women been more active in the political arena, more prominent in the business world and more present on social media platforms. We are striving to break through all of the ceilings that once held us back. We have become more independent than ever before and we know we’re not planning on slowing down any time soon!

The best way to keep this momentum going is to be a monumental force in the workplace. And that means shooting your professional shot.

For those who may not know, “shoot your shot” comes from the concept that basketball players should just shoot the ball, even if they don’t know if they’ll make the shot or not. It is about having enough faith in themselves to believe that although the odds are against them, they will still make that shot anyways. We cheer on our vinas as they shoot their shots in relationships, but when they are shooting for their professional goals, we are more hesitant. Why is that?

Perhaps it’s because we are too afraid of falling into the never ending stereotype that a woman is “demanding” or “bossy” in the workplace. But here’s a reality check: going after what you want doesn’t equate you to any of those terms. It makes you a go-getter in a society that expects you to accept what is given to you with a cute smile and a polite “thank you.”

Thankfully for us, this isn’t the 1940s. Women today aren’t doing the bare minimum anymore and neither should you. Men are moving forward in this world because they have no fear of backlash from others and we need to rid ourselves of that fear as well. Women are making room for other women to move up in the world, and to shy away from opportunities out of fear of what others will have to say would be unfair to ourselves.

in-bossmode-629347-unsplash.jpg

Don’t believe me? Think of any of the boss vinas you look up to and you’ll see all of them had to brazenly chase what they wanted to get it. Thanks to women like Michelle Obama, Serena Williams, and Cardi B, we have proof that having a strong work ethic and accepting nothing but greatness is the new standards all vinas should be setting.

It’s time for us to shoot our professional shot–even if it’s from half court and we aren’t really sure we’ll make it. Because you never know if that shot will be the one that wins the game.

Want to meet other #girlbosses like you? There’s tons of vinas waiting for you in our free communities. Start swiping!

 

THE SECRET CONFIDENCE TIPS THAT EVERY VINA NEEDS TO KNOW

Having confidence can take you a long way but it can also be very hard to attain. Here are some tips to build up your confidence!

SELF-LOVE

The pratice of self-love has become very popular in the past year and it is understandable why. Loving all aspects of yourself can help your confidence tremendously. You can do so by taking care of yourself physically or letting go of things that would usually bother you.

LAW OF ATTRACTION IS REAL

The law of the attraction is the idea that any ideas that you put out in the universe will eventually come true. So try rather than wishing you were confident, say you are and act how you think a confident person would.

tri-vo-587055-unsplash

POSITIVE AFFIRMATIONS

Everyday try saying some positiive things to yourself in the mirror. The more you say it, the more you’ll believe it.

BE SELFISH

Sometimes you have to take care of your well-being before anyone else’s. Be selfish, say no sometimes, do whatever it takes to make sure you stay happy and comfortable. Chances are that a happier you is a more confident you.

IGNORE WHAT OTHER THINK

Do not let a person’s negative comments get to you. Many people try to drag others down and while sometimes it works, be strong and ignore the negativity. As long as you feel great, that is all that matters.

Looking for some vinas to build up your confidence with? Start swiping today!

5 THINGS YOU’LL NEVER REGRET DOING

We live in a world where other people are constantly telling us what we should and should not do. We’re told we will regret getting that Fleetwood Mac tattoo or chopping our hair off or double texting the person we like. But in all honesty, does it even matter in the grand scheme of things?

There are a number of things that we might regret … but there are so many things that you’ll never regret doing. Here are five of them:

1. LETTING GO OF TOXIC RELATIONSHIPS

It’s 2018. Toxic relationships have got to go. This goes for both romantic relationships and friendships, y’all. It doesn’t matter how long you have been with that person or what history you have—no one should have to suffer through a relationship that brings them down. Take back your life and phase the toxic people out. It might be hard at the beginning, but you won’t regret it in the long run. You’ll feel free and lighter in no time.

2. TRAVELING TO A NEW PLACE

One of the best things about traveling is immersing yourself in a world that’s entirely different from your own. Whether you take an international trip or visit a different area of your zip code, traveling allows you to try new foods, learn new things, and connect with new people. You’ll have uniquely new memories, and you can count on the fact that you won’t be the same afterwards.

sylwia-bartyzel-114124-unsplash

3. TAKING A JOB THAT SCARES YOU

Making career moves in general can seem scary, but in the long run, you won’t regret them. Whether you think you are unqualified or you’re jumping into a new industry, just do it. Make that move, girl. Even if the job doesn’t pan out how you planned, you will end up leaving with a better understanding of yourself and what you want for your future. Hated the job? Now you know what you don’t want in a job or in a certain company culture.

4. TREATING YOURSELF

Donna and Tom on Parks and Recreation had it right, but instead of having just one day to Treat Yo’ Self, do it often. Self-care is incredibly important and can have a significant impact on your life. It can be challenging to set aside time for yourself in this era of demanding jobs and stressful environments, but you will never regret taking that time for yourself or getting yourself a fro-yo when you really need it.

5. LETTING YOUR GUARD DOWN

When living our best “Boss B” lives, it can be hard to remember that we also need to let other people in. We are trained to keep our guard up and protect ourselves, but you won’t get far by doing that. It’s a lonely life when you’re guarded and alone in your fortress. Let other people in and allow them to break down your walls, even if you need it to happen slowly. Reach out to new people by joining different communities and swiping right on Hey! VINA, and you never know what new vinas you’ll meet. But we bet they will be as incredible as you.

Overall, remember to take chances while still taking care of yourself. Because who wants a life filled of regret? Not you!

Put your guard down and start finding the friends who will change your life for the better—download Hey! VINA now!

9 WAYS TO CURE LONELINESS

If you already read VINA’s CEO Olivia June’s important PSA today on VINAZINE, you know that we’re taking loneliness seriously here. And we all should—a recent study reported that only half of Americans found that they had meaningful in-person interactions. The takeaway? If you’re feeling lonely, you’re not alone.

Luckily, there are things you can do today to start curing your loneliness. Read on for our top 9 tips!

1. MAKE NEW VINAS

Hey! VINA was launched in 2016 with the mission to help users find their tribe. Once you create your profile, join different communities (as many as you like!) to find vinas who are going through similar life events as you, or vinas you share the same hobbies with. (Happy Hour, anyone?!). From there, start swiping and start meeting! Once you make a match, try to plan a vina date immediately—at the coffee shop, at the gym, wherever. The point is, you’ve got plans…and tons of other vinas waiting to hang with you!

2. JOIN A SPORTS LEAGUE (OR PAINTING CLASS, YOGA, ETC.)

Whether your athletic (or not), there are tons of different leagues that fit your lifestyle. From casual kickball to even board game leagues, you may find one you like. Just going to one event can mean you meet one more friend, so that’s a win-win. If you want to jumpstart, join the athletes or runners community on Hey! VINA and ask around for a local sports league or local runners club. If sports aren’t your thing, try a local pottery class or even a women’s wine night. Find communities that match your needs on VINA and go from there!

3. FIND OUT WHAT YOU NEED

What if you already have friends, but still feel alone? Loneliness also occurs when your current relationships are not meeting your needs, so finding out what these needs are may help you on your journey. Set some time with yourself for self-reflection and make a list of what types of friends or company you are looking for. Then, start building that!

4. BE PRODUCTIVE 

Read a book, go on a walk or start a new hobby. There are so many ways to feel connected with the world and with others in it. Doing errands or shopping at the mall can help you to direct your attention away from your loneliness and connect with the world around you. Say hi to someone, or engage in a conversation to the person standing next to you at Barre. It starts with just one word. You got this, vina!

5. SPEND TIME WITH YOUR FAMILY (OR FRIENDS WHO ARE LIKE FAMILY)

Hanging out with family when you’re down is sometimes the perfect cure for loneliness. Suggest a family game night or going to see a movie. Or pick up the phone and call someone—your grandma, your cousin, your mom. Better yet, make it a weekly thing!

elevate-755075-unsplash.jpg

6. WRITE IT OUT

You need to connect with yourself to fully realize why your loneliness is setting in. Writing about how you feel in a journal can be very helpful for figuring out why you feel a certain way. Start by writing a letter to yourself or even just writing a line a day. Putting your emotions on your paper is one of the best things you can do for yourself, vina.

7. LOOK INTO IT

Look at your relationships, your career, your social calendar, and your overall emotions and find out what could be making you feel alone. It may be difficult, but it’s the only way to move onto the next step. 

8. LOVE YOURSELF

Remember you’re your own best vina. By practicing self-love, you can learn to enjoy your own company. Start every morning with a mantra (Something like, “I’m strong, I’m capable of big things, I’m lovable” or just list out loud three things you like about yourself every day. Trust us, it helps.

9. BE CONFIDENT

You’re a strong, beautiful vina and having confidence in yourself is critical! If you are scared to reach out to new people, try it! If something is wrong in a relationship, work it out! If you are nervous to talk to people, open up! Having confidence in who you are and what you want will only help you break out of your loneliness.

In the end, becoming a better “you” can help in all aspects of life, including attracting great new vinas. No matter what, us vinas are here for you!

The best way to combat loneliness is to find others to connect to. Try out Hey! VINA today!

 

 

 

LIVING IN THE MOMENT

Have you ever stood in silence, lied in bed and stared upward at the ceiling or went anywhere without your phone? Think about it. Those are 3 specific moments in time that will always be in your personal “you time.”

I’m an advocate for timeless moments captured by the naked eye because daily life is almost equivalent to a month-to-month lease; no real guarantee. Instagramming a new restaurant, Facebook posting about your first day on the job or tweeting about your favorite inspirational celebrity ignites a small dependence upon social appreciation and overall acceptance. Because of this dependence, you need to learn how to live in the moment.

START YOUR DAY OFF RIGHT

When you first wake up, reaching for your phone to turn off the alarm is most likely the first thing you do. And, immediately afterwards, you begin to check your messages and scroll through social media. Instead, how about taking deep breaths, making some breakfast or brunch (depending on how early of a bird you are), or go for a walk around the neighborhood to take in the fresh air and scenery around you. We, as humans, truly miss what may have been in our view for a long time.

gian-cescon-637914-unsplash.jpg

TAKE A BREAK FROM YOUR PHONE

Yes, I know, it might be the perfect moment to record your favorite music artist’s concert so you can reminisce on it later, but honestly, the feeling of being there, enjoying every second, is so much better. You pay more attention and that person who keeps bumping into you and apologizing for it becomes your new friend! Plus, it’s not your job to show what every else is missing.

FIGURE IT OUT

There’s a more interactive thought process going on when you have to put puzzles together or figure out solutions. Try going throughout the day without your phone coming to the rescue. How can you do this? Explore the town on your own! The plan is there’s no plan. Figure out the lay of land and see what there is to see. If you get lost, even better! Use this time to experience your surroundings and embrace whatever the world has to offer. Taking a break from technology and living in the moment is the best way to truly live your life. So get out there (without your phone), vina!

Need someone to live in the moments with? Download the Hey! VINA app now and start swiping!