Winter and the Second Wave of COVID Doesn’t Have to Mean a Second Wave of Loneliness

The Coronavirus outbreak has made it harder than ever to be with others. Contact with family and friends continues to be limited. Social and leisure activities are restricted, which can cause feelings of loneliness and heightened mental health issues.

You might be missing family and friends, colleagues or other everyday connections you had. It’s natural to feel like this, and you should not blame yourself for feeling like you are struggling.

It’s really important to remember these changes will not be forever.

If you’re feeling lonely at the moment, the following tips can help. Different things work for different people. Try to find what suits you, and seek further support if you feel you need it.

1.Be more social and check in regularly to combat loneliness

Creating a regular routine of checking in with others and being more sociable makes it so much easier to reach out at the time you feel lonely.

You could try messaging old friends or colleagues on social media or text someone you have not spoken to for a while

Most of us love hearing from people we have lost contact with – and that’s especially true now. It may also encourage them to contact you more, or you could ask if it’s OK to have a regular check-in.

2.Share your feelings

Being able to share your worries and feelings with others can help battle loneliness. Talking to a familiar person or seeing a friendly face makes us feel less isolated.

Reaching out to people you trust and telling them you are feeling lonely can help too. Social media is full of people sharing all the good things happening to them, but remember you can never be too sure what someone is going through.

3.Start doing more things that you enjoy

We now have all the time in the world to rediscover activities we always used to do. Filling your time doing things you enjoy helps to preoccupy your mind from feelings of loneliness.Excercise is an easy wat to lift your mood and help take your minds off of things. Maybe go for a walk, run or start cycling. But always remember to follow Government Guidelines and Social distancing when doing so.

4.Explore new ways to spend time together to combat loneliness

Due to Lockdown restrictions, household mixing is now banned but this doesn’t have to stop you form spending time with others. However, when staying at home there are lots of ways to reach out to friends and family without having to meet in person. Chatting on the phone/video-call can remind you that you are not alone.

Lots of people are doing things together online, like watching films, playing Scrabble or having dinner.

You could join one of the many online clubs and virtual social events taking place, and invite your friends and family to take part too.

5.Join an online community

If you’re struggling with feelings of loneliness or other mental health issues, remember you are not alone.

Join an online community or peer-support group so you can talk to others about how you feel. Groups like Side by Side and SANE Support Forum are available 24 hours a day.

There are also many helplines and support groups that offer expert advice and cover a range of mental health issues.

If you cannot wait to see a doctor and feel unable to cope or keep yourself safe, there is urgent support available. We also provide sitting services for clients.

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