‘I feel empty inside’ Have you ever had this thought? Felt a void inside you that you don’t know how it came about?
This feeling of emptiness inside you doesn’t have a definition, someone may describe it as sadness, others as dread or a little of both.
Feeling empty isn’t uncommon and almost all of us have felt this at some point in our lives. Whether to like to believe it or not, this feeling is real and valid. And while it can be overwhelming at times, it can be managed.
Most of the time, the feeling of emptiness lasts for a few days and can go away on its own but other times, it can persist for long and can become a symptom of an underlying mental health condition.
Let’s take a look at some of the reasons why you feel empty inside.
Why Do I Feel Empty?
Feeling empty can manifest when you might be feeling lonely, confused about your life’s purpose, struggling with quarter-life or a midlife crisis, or feeling no motivation.
This empty feeling in your heart is not uncommon, everyone at one point feels this way. However, this experience can be caused by many factors such as changes in hormones, losing your job, or even when dealing with grief.
In some cases, feeling empty can be a sign of depression, bipolar disorder, stress, or even post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). If you’re experiencing any of the above mental health symptoms, a consultation with a professional can help.
Is Feeling Empty Same As Feeling Depressed?
Not in so many ways but feeling empty does share some signs of feeling depressed. Depression can cause symptoms such as:
- Low or lack of motivation
- Prolonged sadness
- Little or too much sleeping
- Lack of focus
- Lack of pleasure in activities
- Feeling worthless
Feeling empty inside or feeling numb can also be a symptom of depression, although not always. Many people might even feel a void inside rather than sadness. If you’re experiencing the above signs of depression, consult with a mental health professional for a proper diagnosis.
What Are The Causes Of Emptiness?
There are many emotional, mental, and physical factors that can cause this feeling of emptiness inside you. So if you feel empty inside, here are some factors that may be contributing to your feeling:
1. Lack Of Sleep
Sleep and mental health are closely related. Poor sleep can result in poor mental health and vice versa. If you haven’t gotten enough sleep, then you might feel empty inside. A good night’s rest (at least 6-8 hours of sleep) is required to improve mental and emotional strength. When you’re sleep-deprived, you feel tired and that sets the stage for negative thinking.
2. Physical Exhaustion
Feeling empty can also be because you lack the fuel to restart your mind. Exhaustion – mental and physical – can reduce your energy levels that can lead to stress and eventual burnout. When you’re too exhausted, you might lose to ability to think and feel clearly.
3. Feeling Bored
Boredom is another reason why you feel empty inside. When you feel you don’t have a purpose and you’re just going through the motions, then you might begin to feel the void gape open inside you filling you with emptiness. To avoid this, you can try making a list of activities you might feel enjoyable and engaging in those activities.
When a relationship ends, it might leave you feeling lonely. Loneliness is one of the most common reasons why people empty inside. Having a close relationship with your spouse, family, and friends is important for our wellness. When you don’t have a close relationship and are lonely, then you might feel lonely that can cause you to feel depressed and empty.
Grief can be hard and challenging to navigate. Losing your loved one can be devastating and can bring a host of emotions including the feeling of emptiness. Losing a loved one you spent years with suddenly can make your heart and home feel empty.
How To Stop Feeling Empty?
If you’re feeling empty for a long time, it is recommended you speak to a therapist as it could be because of a mental health disorder too. Other times, you can chase the emptiness away in the following ways:
1. Acknowledge The Feeling
If you feel empty, then don’t ignore the feeling, instead, gently acknowledge its presence. Acknowledging will help you accept the feelings that will help you get the right help you might need. If your emptiness is because of grief, accept your loss, and give yourself the time and space needed to process your grief.
2. Spend Time With Yourself
Healing starts from within. Explore yourself, your hobbies, your ideas, etc, and get to know yourself when you’re feeling this way. Find what helps you cope with the emptiness. Is it journaling, meditation, or something else? Take time out to care for yourself.
3. Explore Your Feelings
Take 5 minutes out of your day to explore why you’re feeling empty. Is it because you’re sad, bored, or just lonely? Once you’re aware of your current feelings, you’ll know what to do to cope with these feelings.
4. Connect With Your Loved Ones
Reaching out to your loved ones can also help you reduce the feeling of emptiness. When you talk to others about your feelings, you’re allowing yourself to open up and find solutions. Keep in touch with your friends and family when you feel the emptiness inside.
6. Practice Self-Care
Take time to practice self-care when you feel down and low. There are many types of self-care that you should practice. Eat healthily, get good sleep, consider writing in a journal, or just meditate. When you care for yourself, you’ll be better equipped to chase away your emptiness with healthy coping.
Feeling empty inside is not uncommon and can be hard to deal with, however not impossible. Accepting the feeling and taking the steps to care for yourself can help chase these feelings away.
If your feeling of emptiness persists then you could seek professional help for a better diagnosis. You can also write to us at email@example.com for more.
I hope the above information on why you feel empty inside helps you cope with your feelings. If this article helped you, let us know in the comments below.