Are you a lonely person?
Do you hate the weekends because people are off in their own social circles and you’re all by yourself?
Do you wish you had a cure for loneliness?
I’m going to tell you why the cure for loneliness is the same as the cure for obesity.
In fact, if you’re already fat, then I’m willing to bet that you’re lonely as well.
What is the cure for loneliness?
The reason for this is extremely simple. Try and follow my logic here:
- Obesity is caused by eating processed foods to excess
- If you don’t eat excessive amounts of processed foods, then you won’t be obese
- Eating excessive amounts of processed foods in a short amount of time is called bingeing
- Therefore, obesity is caused by bingeing.
If what I remember from my logic class that I think I failed in community college is correct, then that’s the first “argument.”
Now let’s look at the next one.
- Bingeing is a solitary activity.
- Lonely people are solitary
- Solitary people spend a lot of time alone
- If bingeing is a solitary activity, then lonely people are more likely to binge.
If we want to figure out the cure for loneliness (and thus binge eating), then all we have to do is reverse it.
- Lonely people spend a lot of time alone.
- Bingeing is done when you’re alone.
- If you spend less time alone, then you’ll binge less.
- If you spend no time alone, then you won’t binge at all.
- Therefore, the cure for obesity is the same as the cure for loneliness.
If we want to break it down in the simplest sense, we would say this:
- Obesity is caused by binge eating.
- Binge eating is caused by loneliness.
- Loneliness is caused by being alone.
- Therefore, obesity is caused by being alone.
To sum it up with a final conclusion:
Curing loneliness will cure obesity.
Brilliant! Where’s my Nobel Prize?
How I accidentally found the cure for loneliness
So at the time of this writing, I’m currently living in a share house in Tokyo.
Share houses are a type of housing that offers dormitory style living at a steep discount.
In other words, you share a room with a bunch of people and pay only a fraction of what you would pay if you had your own apartment.
There are a ton of benefits to this style of living beyond being a cure for loneliness.
- Flexible enter/exit dates
- No need to sign a lease
- Can meet other easily
- Very social place
- Usually a central location in the middle of the city
When I got here about a month ago, I didn’t really like the place.
I’m a fairly social guy while traveling, but I found the people here to be somewhat standoffish and cold.
I’m the type of guy who walks into a room and starts talking to whoever is next to me. Strange since I still think of myself as the shy loser from high school.
But anyway, when I tried to be social in this particular sharehouse, people looked at me like I was from another planet.
Turns out the few people that acted cold towards me are were actually just weirdos anyway. After realizing that, I didn’t feel so bad.
Plus, Japanese people in general aren’t exactly known for their amazing social skills. And the foreigners who come to Japan are 100% weird across the board – also with bad social skills on average.
Anyway, the point is that after a few days I managed to make friends and chat with people a bit.
Because Japanese people are SUPER weird about their private time, it’s not really practical for me to be on my computer in my room. I type quite a bit because I create a lot of content, so for me to be clicking away at my laptop in a room where you could hear a pin drop is rude.
Everything in Japan is rude.
Fortunately, there is a common room here with fast wifi and lots of power outlets. This is where I spend most of my time.
Was it a 100% cure for my loneliness? Not really. But it was a start.
My typical day in the sharehouse would look something like this:
- Wake up between 6-7 AM
- Work until around 11
- Go to the park and do some calisthenics for 30-40 mins
- Come back and do a little more work
- Go walk around Tokyo for 3-4 hours
- Come back and go to the store to buy some food
- Eat the food around 6-7
- Chill for the rest of the night and snack periodically
- Go to bed around 11
This was my routine for about three weeks after getting here. That’s actually been my routine for the past couple of years, now that I think about it.
Sure, some things change, but I’ve noticed that where I do the most damage to myself in terms of caloric intake is during the snacking phase of my night.
While doing OMAD, it’s very easy for your unconscious mind to take over and think to itself, “You’re not going to eat anything for another 23 hours. Aren’t you hungry? Don’t you want to buy that extra large bag of rice crackers? Come on. You’ll work out tomorrow. It’s okay.”
Those rice crackers turn into cookies, which turns into ice cream, which turns into a few extra pounds on the scale the next day.
Is living with other people the cure for loneliness?
So what does this have to do with making friends in the sharehouse?
Well, even though I managed to become friendly with 80% of the people living here, they were still just casual acquaintances. Not really the type of people I’d have a long conversation with. More like a hi how are you type of friend.
However, about a week ago, a few people came to the sharehouse that seemed like they wanted to have longer conversations with me.
Or maybe I wanted to have longer conversations with them.
For about three days in a row, new people arrived and I found myself having 2-3 hour conversations with them every single night – exactly around the time I was scheduled to snack.
What ended up happening is that I was so engrossed in the conversations with them that I missed several of my snacking rounds. Before I knew it, it was midnight and time for me to go to bed.
I suppose I could have gone out and gotten some extra food and eaten it, but I chose instead to go to bed. It was simply too inconvenient.
If this had only happened once, I probably wouldn’t have realized it was the cure for loneliness.
But over those three days, I noticed that I leaned out considerably.
The skin around my neck started to tighten up and my face got thinner. My shirts fit better, like they did when I was in SE Asia.
After this happening for three days in a row, I had my epiphany:
If I hadn’t been talking to these people, I would have been quietly snacking by myself and messing around on the computer. Or playing on my phone.
Talking to people: the cure for obesity?
If you still somehow disagree with my single piece of anecdotal evidence regarding the cure for loneliness as the cure for obesity, let me tell you another experience that might change your mind.
When I was living in Thailand a few months ago, I went to Chiang Mai for a digital nomad conference. Originally only planning on being there for a few days, I was so impressed with the vibe at the conference that I decided to stay there for a few months.
While I don’t regret my time there per se, I definitely stayed there too long. I didn’t network with other digital nomads like I planned at all. And in fact most of my days were spent in my room by myself working on god knows what.
Sure, I got a lot of work done, but it was a very lonely experience.
That said, I was in incredible shape during this time. I would go on 10km runs on the streets of Chiang Mai and THEN go do Crossfit workouts at an awesome gym afterwards.
I was jacked, ripped, whatever you want to call it.
Seems like it contradicts my earlier point, doesn’t it?
I was ALSO binge snacking like it was my JOB.
My evening meal consisted of an all you can eat Korean BBQ restaurant where I would pay 160 baht (about $6) and stuff myself with beef, pork, chicken, kimchi and follow it up with ice cream at the end of the meal.
Then for dessert I would go get a massive fruit shake from my fruit shake homeboy.
Then for second dessert I would go to Tesco Lotus and get some weird Thai snacks.
Then for third dessert I would go get some weird snacks from some other street food vendors.
I was so stuffed every night before going to bed I’m kind of amazed that I was in such amazing shape.
If you compare this story to the previous section, you’ll notice a striking similarity.
Lonely at night. Snacking at night. Bingeing at night.
Now, I personally believe that because I had the proper habits in place of working out like a monster, I was able to “absorb” the negative effects of these habits and come out with a positive result overall.
In other words, the combination of doing OMAD and extremely intense workouts was enough to still stay ripped despite excessive snacking.
During the month and a half I was there, I had a friend visit me from Israel.
This specific friend was a female, and as it happens when a female visits a male in a foreign country, there’s always the question of: “Am I going to sleep with this person?”
Is doing the nasty the cure for loneliness?
So this person came to visit me in Chiang Mai and of course I had to entertain them. Show them around, hang out with them, that kind of thing.
I met this girl when I was in Tel Aviv about six months prior and we had only hung out maybe 2-3 times.
Still, she was in town and wanted to hang out (and I am a social guy, remember?), so we planned to meet up.
I’ll spare you all the details of the story, but suffice to say that this specific friend is one of those people who requires high levels of engagement when you’re hanging out with them.
Maybe all women fall into this category, now that I think about it.
I would go visit her right before eating my evening meal and we would go eat somewhere together. I’d fill up on enough food for 3 people while she ate a small plate of fried rice.
Maybe we would get some dessert afterwards, but I would forgo my second and third desserts.
For the week or so she was there, we would hang out from roughly 6 PM to 12 AM give or take.
Similar to my recent experience in the sharehouse, I found myself spending so much time talking to her, that I didn’t feel the desire to snack.
Rather I DID feel the desire to snack, but my desire to not seem like a fat weirdo and smash $9 worth of Thai snacks in front of her won out.
Finding a cure for loneliness through other people
And if you think about it, this is very similar to how obese people act when food is around.
I don’t know about you, but every time I hang out with a friend who is obese and self-conscious about his or her weight, they RARELY eat around me.
If they do eat, they’ll eat the same amount as I do.
But there’s no way they are 100 lbs heavier than me just from eating the same amount of food as I am.
Those extra calories have to come from somewhere.
And while I haven’t gotten to the point where I’m installing hidden cameras in my obese friends’ houses to spy on them while they binge eat in an attempt to heal their childhood trauma, I believe that all that extra fat is coming from intense binge eating sessions like I experienced when I spent a lot of time alone.
Is the cure for loneliness the same as the cure for obesity?
Sadly, the world we live in today is one where people don’t actually seem to want to fix their problems.
With ridiculous movements like Healthy At Every Size (HAES), it seems like a sizable chunk of the population don’t want to change.
They just want to be told that nothing is their fault.
I have no idea why this is.
To me, living a healthy life is easier than living an unhealthy one. That’s why I do it.
Yes, it requires a little more work to go to the gym and train your body. And you have to abstain from unhealthy processed foods.
Or at least eat them in moderation.
Or at least scale them up or down depending on the intensity of your workouts.
Is my Nobel Prize-winning theory going to see the light of day? Is it going to be published in medical journals around the world and will I be hailed as a genius?
Does it work?
Of course this begs the question: if the cure for obesity is the same as the cure for loneliness, then how do we put them into practice?
I wish I had an easy step by step answer for you. But I don’t.
In fact, the only thing I can think of is to go out and socialize every single night during time when you’d be bingeing on unhealthy food instead.
For guys, this could mean working on their pickup skills and going out to nightclubs every night.
For girls, this could just mean going out every night and… I dunno, doing whatever girls do when they go out.
Screaming and being excited for no reason?
It’s not an easy solution. And it’s definitely MUCH harder than just skipping the cookie aisle at the grocery store.
But the point is this: you have to figure out something to do OTHER than be by yourself during times when you’re more likely to snack.
If you notice that your binges come at the same time every day, then all you have to do is stick yourself in a situation with people that you’re expected to talk to during that time.
But again, this comes down to the ultimate problem in the self improvement world:
People already know what to do, but nobody actually does it.
If we all did what we knew we should do, we’d all be billionaires with six packs.
But instead, we’re fat and/or broke with poor social lives.
Like everything else, the choice is yours.
Today, right now, right this second – you can make a decision to change your life and do something about whatever problem you have.
Or you can just close this page and do something else and keep having this problem until the day you die.
Up to you.