Loneliness can affect anyone. The term is often characterised as 'being alone', but a more accurate interpretation is when you feel that you haven't had a genuine connection with anyone. It's quite common to feel lonely in a house full of flatmates, especially if you weren't friends to begin with. Whether you're living on your own or with others, here are some ways to beat the blues and make a real connection.
We often tell our friends and family that our door is always open if they need anything, but how many of us actually make that call? It can be hard to ask for help, even of those closest to us. Likewise, friends often won't make the first move to support you, for fear of stepping on your toes or making you feel uncomfortable.
Whether your loved ones live near or far, simply telling them that you could do with catching up more often, or putting a monthly meet up in the diary can really help. Opening up to others also helps to build trust, making a connection feel more genuine.
You might be able to anticipate when you're going to feel more lonely. Perhaps at certain times of the week, when you're alone for long periods of time or when your usual companions have different commitments. See this time as an opportunity to do something important to you, rather than a result of not having plans. Get creative; make music or art; bake something; have an evening of indulgent me-time. You could even sign up to a virtual class. Making plans means you stop feeling like you're 'doing nothing' and focuses your mind on 'doing something'.
Talking therapy is a chance to speak to a professional about your thoughts, feelings and behaviours. Loneliness can often be wrapped up with other mental health problems, and talking with someone who doesn't know you like a friend or family member can aid you in coming up with a game plan.
What better way to make new friends than by connecting over something you both enjoy? Take a look online for clubs in your local area. Many clubs are doing things virtually right now, but there is ample opportunity to start meeting people in person once things open up again.
If you don't have a particular hobby, give one of the ideas below a try:
*Pleast not the information above is not intended as medical advice and is only intended to offer points you may wish to consider in 'non-emergency situations', together with signposting for more support. You should consult an appropriate medical professional if you have concerns about your child or someone you know.