How to Stop Feeling Empty
Many clients come to therapy in hopes of gaining fulfillment and happiness in their lives. They have felt a void and inner desolation while also lacking purpose and meaning in life. This can become difficult to overcome on your own and can be masked with the belief that you are missing things such as needing a partner, money, success, love/admiration from others, close friendships, a job, intimacy, etc.. However, when we dig deeper there is often more behind the emptiness. Once you get that dream job you will feel whole; when you find the person who loves you, you will feel satisfied. Then when those moments come it doesn’t feel the way you thought it would; There still feels like there is something missing. More often than not, it comes down to lacking in the relationship with yourself and/or believing that you don’t deserve to be happy (even subconsciously at times). All of those surface level concerns are real and can be a part of the puzzle in finding purpose. However, you have to feel like you deserve happiness and joy in your life and allow it to be there without sabotaging it.
We need to be able to acknowledge the emptiness and in a gentle way. Beating yourself up, dismissing, or trying to simply change these feelings isn’t usually very effective. The feeling of emptiness is most likely there because of something deeper and trying to explore and understand that can be really healing in trying to stop feeling empty. Self-exploration can be a helpful and healing tool which may take some experimentation to find what works.
To overcome the feeling of emptiness, there has to be a deeper understanding of where the feelings are coming from through exploration. This can be best done in a therapeutic setting with someone who is trained to guide you through the experience. If that doesn’t feel realistic or that feels like too big of a step for you right now, you can start on your own with journaling, meditating, or other processes to allow you to explore your thoughts and feelings. You are doing this to get to know yourself and that means going DEEP not just looking at things on the surface or what you see right away. It can be uncomfortable and overwhelming to confront what may be hiding in the shadows. Some questions to meditate on in those experiences can include:
· Have you been comparing yourself to others?
· Are you judging yourself?
· Do you only notice or pay attention to failures or limitations you are facing?
· Are you minimizing your feelings?
· Are you taking care of your overall wellbeing including your emotions, mental, and physical health?
· Are you focusing too much on the needs and wants of others?
· Are you blaming yourself for things that are out of your control?
· Are you treating yourself with the same kindness that you extend to others?
By trying to build your relationship with yourself, you can start to fill in parts of your life without needing anyone or anything else to fill that void for you. Often, when there is a feeling of emptiness or void there is an attempt to fill that with other things which can lead to using alcohol, drugs, TV, social media, toxic relationships or anything else to ‘feel better,’ but that is often only a temporary fix or band aid to something that is much deeper rooted in your life. You are your own unique person so try to find things that work for you not what works for everyone else. Meditation might be helpful for one person, but not for another. Journaling, exercising, reading, cooking, it really depends on your unique interests. It may take some experimentation to find things that allow you to feel connected to yourself.
Once you know the source of some of these feelings, you can start to dismantle and overcome some of these feelings. Again, this is best done with a trained professional who can assist in this process and allow you to find ways to challenge and reframe some of these thoughts and feelings holding you back. They can assist in finding what works the best for you and provide perspectives as well as tools and techniques to work through and confront what is contributing to the void and emptiness that you feel.
To find a therapist best suited for you, using a directory such as mental health match, psychology today, or therapyden. To connect with me, you can book your free 30 minute consultation on our website or feel free to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
*Although I am a therapist by profession, I am not YOUR therapist. This article is for informational and educational purposes only, does not replace therapy and does not establish any kind of therapist-client relationship with me. I am not liable or responsible for any damages resulting from or related to your use of this information. To see more information about our disclamer(s): https://www.mindfulsolutionscorp.com/disclaimers