This month I am writing about the theme of loneliness. Loneliness has been chosen as the theme for Mental Health Awareness Week (9-15 May).

An image showing people looking lonely

Why loneliness ?

Loneliness has been chosen as it is affecting more and more people. Since the start of the pandemic, it has had a huge impact on our physical and mental health. Having connection with people and community protects our mental health.

Loneliness is not being alone

I believe it is important to separate loneliness from being alone. Loneliness is a lack or feeling a lack of connection with other people. You can feel lonely around people for many different reasons, this could be that you don’t feel heard, understood, or you don’t believe you can be your true self. Feelings of loneliness may mean that you have lowered self-esteem.

Loneliness can be experienced at any age, or time in our lives. There is not any one reason, or trigger. As we are all unique then it is not a simple ‘one fix’, however, these are some suggestions which might be helpful.

Keep in touch with people around you

The word connect

A friendly chat can make a big difference, this can be in person, or via messages.

Join a group

In person, or on-line it can help if it is with people with a shared interest.

Do things you enjoy

Spending time on things you enjoy will help to lift your mood and occupy your mind, leaving less focus on feeling lonely. Check out my self care activities, maybe there is something on there which you will enjoy

Share your feelings if you can

Emoji showing different facial expressions.

If you feel you are able to share your feelings with someone this can help.

Reach out to others

A wave or hello to those around us can make a big difference.

Two hands reaching towards each other.

Counselling to help

There are some things that can get in the way of overcoming loneliness, perhaps you are low in confidence, have low energy levels, or perhaps it feels difficult to make a chance.

Counselling can give you a chance to consider your thoughts and feelings. Through connecting with someone it can help to look to what might help support you to feel less lonely.