Why Do I Feel Empty & Tips to Bring Back Joy

Britney Spears’ song “Lucky” got me thinking. I am so blessed. I wouldn’t change a thing –except paying bills…- So why do I feel empty inside when I live such a blessed life?

I seem to have it all, so why do I feel empty inside? I am married to a fabulous husband who serves his country. We are financially stable. We have good health.

Our family is loving and happy. I am blessed to stay at home and raise my daughter, and have a career that can follow my hubby anywhere. But the feeling persists.

This post will help you discover the real reason why you’re feeling empty inside and how to start becoming happy again.

This post covers:

  • What is Emotional Numbness?
  • The 9 Reasons Why You Feel Empty
  • Tips for how to bounce back from emotional numbness

PS: NONE of these tips are because you’re ungrateful, so read on to get to the root of your emotional numbness.

How To Stop Feeling Empty Inside Why Do I Feel Empty
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Stock Image Of Britney Spears

What Does Feeling Empty Indicate?

If you’re like me, you have said or thought the following:

  • Why do I feel empty?
  • Why do I feel numb?
  • I am so blessed. Why do I feel something is missing?
  • I have such a good life. Why am I not happy?
  • I must be ungrateful. I’m so blessed but I need more.
  • I just wish I could feel happy again.
  • Feeling nothing is so much worse than feeling feeling sad. I just want to feel again.

We all go through periods of emotional numbness or “feeling empty”. But what does that mean?

Feeling empty inside means that your emotions are suppressed or blocked.

Emotional numbness happens for many reasons: trauma, illness, stress, and life changes.

To become happy again, you have to find the reason behind your sudden emotional numbness.

Then you can begin the healing process and make small changes to help overcome your emotional block.

RELATED POST: How to Be Happy When You’re Living With PTSD

Woman Adjusting To An Unbusy Lifestyle So She Can Stop Feeling Numb Inside- Why Do I Feel Empty Inside &Amp; Tips On How To Become Happy Again

What Causes Empty Feelings?

You’ve been so busy all your life that you feel empty without it.

Life keeps you busy. Your life is filled with work, hobbies, kids, pets, bills, etc. But kids grow up, we lose interest in hobbies, or we found the secret to being “un-busy” –if you find that secret, let me know! I want in too!-

When your routine and schedule change, you feel lost and empty. Like something is missing in life.

That’s just us learning to adjust to change.

It is perfectly normal to feel empty, lost, or even confused when you suddenly find yourself suddenly un-busy.

Hey lady, I get it. Society has told us to stomp that gas pedal and never stop going. But is that really good for you in the long run? No.

We’re not built to run 24/7. We have physical and emotional needs. And chances are if you’re trying to stuff your schedule full, you’re not taking the time to care for your needs. –Admit it, as a woman, we tend to put ourselves last and forgo our own self care.

RELATED POST: What is Self Care & Unlocking the Benefits of Self Care

Tips to Help The Transition Into a Less Frantic Lifestyle
  • Show yourself some kindness and remind yourself that being busy isn’t your life’s goal, but enjoying your life.
  • Pick up a new hobby to help relieve stress. Need inspiration? Check out our stress relief hobbies!
  • Allow yourself to feel unsettled. It takes time to feel adjusted after a big change.
  • Create a new routine to help you learn your new lifestyle. Follow it until you feel comfortable again. Add in healthy habits along the way.
  • Take the time to engage in new methods of self care.
  • Date your partner & create new sparks in your romance.

RELATED POST: 25 Stress Relieving Hobbies You Need to Sooth Anxiousness

Infographic About Why You Feel Emotionally Numb Inside- Why Do I Feel Empty Inside?
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You aren’t feeling challenged.

We all want to be mentally stimulated. And let’s face it. Boredom is a bitch.

You know the feeling that no matter what you do, you just can’t seem to stimulate and entertain yourself.

When we sit in our comfort zone for too long, we can experience boredom and feel like we’re stuck in a rut.

This is the time to add some metaphorical spice to your life- take on a challenge!

How to Add New Challenges to Your Life & Conquer Boredom

Here’s a few quick suggestions for conquering boredom:

A great way to add a challenge to your life is to take part in day, week, monthly or yearly challenges! There are so many challenges out there, and we’ve saved them all to our own Pinterest board.

Woman Rips Open Curtains And Is Ready To Challenge Her Day- Why Do I Feel Empty
Get out of your comfort zone and take on a challenge!

You don’t feel important.

This is one of the big triggers for emptiness. Feeling forgotten or taken for granted causes us to feel isolated and empty.

But we typically only think about the people that we interact with the most: our friends and loved ones.

When your mechanic does his job right, your car needs less problem solving maintenance; not more. Same goes for you!

You may be the person for someone that will give them an honest opinion, has a kind word, or you are their support system. You might just be the face they look forward to seeing everyday in line. You never know how much you matter.

You don’t have to be the star of life’s movie to be an important character.

Just like a great movie, there is a main character and many great supporting characters. And sometimes those supporting characters are the most loved. –Where would Harry Potter be without Ron and Hermione?-

In my role as a military wife and mom, I have a very important job of supporting my family so they can rise to their challenges. That doesn’t always put me in the spotlight.

Being happily married to a soldier means that, for many years, my big goals and dreams have been on hold so I can support my soldier. And now that his time serving is almost through and my daughter needs me less, I can step forward and start living my own dreams.

It doesn’t mean you can’t have your dreams; it just means you have to change what they look like.

Fulfilling my role in my family means I don’t always stand out. But it’s doesn’t mean that I am not important.

When my husband got his promotion last year, he brought home flowers and did a big speech to his coworkers that none of it would have been possible without me. I was flabbergasted. I didn’t realize how important I had been to his success. Those little trivial things I had done that I thought weren’t important helped him feel confident enough that he could focus on his career goal while being a loving husband and father.

So a shout out to all the supporting characters in life who make life easier for wonderful kids, our first responders, those hardworking executives, animal activists, and so many more important jobs, and yes stay at home parents get a HUGE shout out!

Tips for Feeling Important:

1- If you feel you are being taken advantage of, have a conversation with your loved one and tell them what you need to feel loved and appreciated.

Many times our loved ones get so caught up in being busy they forget to slow down and appreciate others. My hubby, being a super busy guy, needs a gentle reminder to be more appreciative.

2- Show your appreciation to others as well. There may be those that do not feel comfortable expressing their needs yet. You never know who appreciates your kindness

3- Volunteering can help you reconnect and feel appreciated again.

  • Visit the elderly.
  • Foster a dog who is waiting for his forever home.
  • Babysit children who have working parents.
  • Tutor a child.
  • Plant a community garden.

4- Start a blog and help others with helpful articles and stories.

5- Take the time to get to know yourself again.

Learn about your own love language and how you need to feel appreciated.

Sometimes the way we need to be shown love changes as we do. Get to know yourself and discover what you need in your life to feel love and appreciated.

-Me? I need to be thought of without prompting. My hubby does little errands for me and brings me little snacks. And since I need reassurance to ease my anxiety, he tells me how much these little things I do matter now. He and I both learned that I need very clear signals to feel loved.-

When your life changes and you are feeling numb inside, learning how to self sooth and calm your own fears will help you conquer life’s challenges.

RELATED POST: 8 Simple Calming Techniques You Need to Ease Anxiety & PTSD

RELATED POST: How to Overcome Your Fears with Desensitization

Woman Sitting On Couch Not Feeling Important- Why Do I Feel Numb Inside &Amp; Tips On How To Become Happy Again
Feeling ignored can leave you feeling empty about your blessed life.

Your blessed life is society’s dream, not yours.

Our society is full of opinions –yes, they’re opinions and not facts- about how to live an ideal life.

For the “ideal life”, society deems we marry, have 2.5 kids –at least-, work ourselves to the bone while also simultaneously raising a perfect family.

If you’re a woman, you also have to adhere to society’s beauty standards.

And men, well, they are supposed to be workaholics who don’t have emotions.

It also demands we keep our schedule busy from sun up to sun down, and sacrifice our happiness to fit in.

Life is not a “one size fits all” scenario. And it is exhausting trying to shove your amazing self into society’s tiny box.

We are so blessed to have a variety of different people.

There are women and men who gave up having families just to progress medical science.

We have stay at home parents of all sexes now.

Women can also have those high power careers now, opt out of having children and have pets instead, and take charge in their life.

Men can be emotional and still be strong, be stay at home parents, and be the supportive and loving stability of a relationship.

There is nothing that we can’t do when we step outside society and gender rules and accept our true self.

Tips for Living Your Life:

You do not have to live up to society’s ideal version.

You get to choose your version of a blessed life. It’s your life, not anyone else’s. Live it so you’re happy!

  • Stop pretending to like and hate things you don’t.
  • Stop keeping relationships that are toxic. Yes it hurts to let go, and you feel you failed, but in the long run leaving a toxic relationship with friends, family, and loved ones will help you grow and thrive.
  • Make choices that benefit your family and your life, not people who do not live in your home.
  • Learn to set boundaries based on your own thoughts, feelings, wants and needs.
  • Start making choices and work toward goals that help you improve your life, relationships, family, and well being.
  • Embrace your quirks and uniqueness.
  • Stop trying to squeeze yourself into a box to fit into an outdated society model.
    • You are amazing just as you are. Whether your tall or short, petite or plus size, an introvert or extrovert; you are amazing just the way you are! You do not have to change yourself for society’s liking.

RELATED POST: How to Be Happy When You’re Living With PTSD

Woman Being Carefree And Living Her Own Life- Why Do I Feel Numb Inside &Amp; Tips On How To Become Happy Again
Kick out those outdated society standards and start living your own version of your blessed life.

You hide your true self to keep up your “blessed life” image.

We all want to fit in. Who doesn’t want to feel part of the crowd? But by pretending to be, like, and feel things you aren’t; all you’re truly doing is alienating yourself from your tribe.

Embracing your uniqueness and showcasing your quirks allows people to love you for you. Hiding behind a false persona is exhausting. Not to mention that you just feel unhappy that people cannot accept your true self.

Tips for Living Authentically:

I use to “fake it until I made it” to fit into groups of people that were accepted. But I really felt a deep depression that no one knew the real me. No one knew what I really loved, felt, or experienced. I just always felt that I did not fit in. My deep desire to fit in was what was actually keeping me feeling empty.

By accepting that I was different, I learned not only to like myself, but found people that liked me. My life feels much fuller and rich by truly enjoying myself and the people that love me for my uniqueness.

1-Grab a self love workbook. Now hear me out. Lots of us don’t feel comfortable opening up to strangers. Who better to open yourself up to, but yourself? It’s easier to start inward and start learning to love yourself vs having others learning to love you.

2- Leave it all in therapy. Dig deep and have a mental health professional help you learn to love yourself while you explore why you react and think how you do.

3- Keep a Journal to help you along the way. Having a record to look back on and learn from will help you progress as you go.

RELATED POST: 20 Healthy Mindset Habits You Need to Improve Your Anxiety

Peacock With Full Feather Display- Why Do I Feel Numb Inside

Your Mental Health is Suffering.

When your mental health is off, you start feeling numb to your surroundings. It’s very hard to appreciate your blessed life when you feel numb inside . A few mental illnesses that can cause you to ask yourself, “Why do I feel numb?” are:

Tips for Healing Your Mental Health

Whether you need self care, medication, therapy, or psychiatric help; prioritizing your mental health can help you feel positive again and appreciating your blessed life in no time.

RELATED POST: How to Be Happy When You’re Living With PTSD

Journal Open With Flowers Reminding Your To Take Care Of Yourself- Why Do I Feel Empty?

You are Not Chasing Your Passion.

We all have experienced jobs we hate. They zap our energy fast and leave us feeling empty and numb in our life. It becomes a chore to get out of bed and start the day. We feel our lives have become meaningless.

While not everyone can navigate a big career change in their lives; you can pursue your passion!

Start that dream garden, volunteer your time and work with pups that need help, or start a blog and start writing!

I volunteered with local dog rescues to help train foster dogs for their new lives. In later years, I started photographing rescue pups to help them get adopted. And now I have a blog to help others with their mental health. I am a woman of many loves and passions, so I dabble in all of them and really live a blessed life now.

Adding your passion to your day will give you a reason to look forward to your day. It may even give you the confidence to make big changes!

Tips to Follow Your Dreams Even When The Time Isn’t Right
  • Start hobbies and activities that help you in the long run.
  • Take a class to help you improve your skills.
  • Volunteer with others to learn more about your passion.
  • Join groups to make friends with like minded people.
  • Start small at home projects to help develop your process.
  • Follow social media accounts that align with your long term goals for inspiration.
&Quot;It'S Not My Work, It'S My Passion&Quot; Being Uncovered- Why Do I Feel Empty Inside?

You’re Feeling Lonely.

Face it, making friends as an adult isn’t as easy as it is as a child. Back then, all we needed was to go to class together. Some of us are truly blessed to find true friends through work. I was not one of them.

We’re a military family, which means every few years, we move. And we’ve done this 5+ times now. Each time, I have to get new (in person) friends.

Tips to Heal Loneliness

Some of my best friendships have come from joining groups with interests similar to mine.

In our last city, I tried Dungeons & Dragons. I wanted a weekly outing that involved people and having free fun. Well, the free part turned out not to be true as I started buying a surplus of snacks for the games -I should have known as I love to snack!-, but the friends that I made are some of my most cherished. We still get together each week virtually to chat and play.

I have made friends through volunteering with dog rescue groups, church activities, local neighborhood get activities, Facebook groups, and even made friends by creating a doggie playgroup for my new puppy.

A blessed life should always include good friends!

  • Just because you don’t live near someone, doesn’t mean you can’t be friends.
  • Join some facebook groups and engage with people with the same interests as you.
  • Get a pet! A fun pet always helps you feel less alone.
  • Visit the elderly. You help relieve their loneliness too. And they never say no to a visit.
  • Create your own network of friends. Find people that share your interests, your needs, your wants, and your journey. Those people are your tribe!
  • Grab your copy of “Here to Make Friends” and learn how you can make lasting friendships.

I wish I had this book when we first started moving around. This is a workbook that helps you navigate the waters of making friends, identifying healthy relationships with friends, and how to meet new friends!

This book has sections to help introverts and extroverts make friends. As well as many exercises to help you create lasting, healthy, and strong friendships.

Woman Alone Trying To Ease Her Numbness- Why Do I Feel Empty Inside

You’re Stressed and Need a Break to Reduce The Overwhelm.

Even the most positive of us get stressed. And with all the tragedy and heartache in the world, we’re bound to feel drained and empty.

It’s when we’re feeling empty that we need to love ourselves the most.

Self care will help you reduce the overwhelm and help you feel better again.

Tips to Reduce Stress and Overwhelming Feelings

When I am feeling excessively stressed, I take a sabbatical. I ditch social media and the news. “Ignorance is bliss” is a saying for a reason. I take a day(s) off work to clear my mind and reduce my stress levels. Getting away from my stressors helps me refocus on feeling good.

On my self care day, I partake of some of my favorite hobbies for stress relief!

And mine involves power tools!! It’s like getting your anger and frustration out, but in a safe and acceptable manner. I repurpose and repaint furniture, which can require sanding, drilling, cutting boards, power spraying, and more! After a day of working with my hands, I feel happy and tired.

On terrible days when I have less physical energy, I play video games. My favorite game that helps me relax –and is super cute- is Stardew Valley. The cute animals and simple graphics help me destress. Farm and building games really mellow me out so I can get away from the overwhelming feelings.

I always end my day with a hot bath filled with epsom salt soak and lavender essential oil to help soothe my senses and help promote a restful sleep.

RELATED POST: 8 Simple Calming Techniques You Need to Ease Anxiety & PTSD

Stressed Woman On Couch Trying Stress Relief Tips And Self Care- Why Do I Feel Empty
Too much stress can cause feelings of numbness and have us asking “Why do I feel so empty?”

Feeling numb and empty in your life is a sign that something needs to change. Whether that means you need to express your needs, take a break, or spend time with loved ones. Remember to take time to love yourself.

What does feeling numb inside signify to you? Tell me in the comments!
How To Be Happy Again When You Feel Empty Inside- Tips For Feeling Happy When You Are Feeling Numb Inside

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I’m so grateful for your support to keep a positive space for women with anxiety! Thank you!

  1. This is such a powerful article. Sometimes we look and see everything we ever thought we wanted. But do we really want it? Or, as you said, society told us so? It’s so important to let go of others’ opinion and find what really makes us happy. Thank you for sharing this inspiring article 🙂

  2. This post is so relatable! one of the biggest contributors is living societys dream. im slowing coming to terms that what i want for myself doesnt necessarily match the norm and thats ok

  3. This article is spot on. The majority of what you say resonates with me, especially the part about living our life based on society’s dream, not ours, and how we all want to fit in. I feel like I’ve been fighting this my entire life. I want to live my version of a blessed life, but I keep running into people, especially family members, who don’t get it and make me feel ungrateful. But, in the end, I decided and accepted that it’s fine not to be understood by everyone. They can’t understand my desires because they aren’t theirs. The important thing is that I live my life the way I want to, and I don’t need others to approve of my choices.

  4. This is a fantastic article! For me, it’s most definitely my life is society’s dream, not mine. The past 6 months I have been working constantly to follow my passions while working a job full time and it can be pretty exhausting. But I’m doing the best I can and making progress, even if it’s just a little, every day. Thanks so much for sharing this!

  5. Great post! I can relate to several of these as the pandemic was affecting my health. I recently had a wake-up call from God that made me realize I need to start living so I can get back to some sense of normalcy. I needed to read these tips and start striving for the positive mindset I have always had before. Thank you for sharing!

  6. For me feeling empty means feeling lonely, especially since the pandemic. But things are getting better and I actually went out and got myself a small part-time job in a kitchen store. And I love it! I get to meet and chat to people. Just what I needed. Great post, thanks for sharing!

  7. What an encouraging post! I love your point about making sure we are challenging ourselves and opening ourselves up to new experiences. This will really help us to feel more alive, present, and fulfilled 🙂

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Krystian Howe
Hi! I'm Krystian. The Creator of With Love, Me. I created this blog for others like myself: people living with anxiety disorder on a daily basis. I have been living with anxiety since my teens. This blog is to give you a how to guide for living with anxiety, because I sure didn't have one. I want to save you the pain and misery I had of figuring it out all on my own. Join me and my service dog Koda on the journey to help you manage your anxiety. See you on the blog and our socials!
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