Let's Be Honest, everyone feels lonely at some point. And that’s okay! You might feel like you’ll be burdening people with a small issue, but in reality, loneliness is something we need to talk about more.
The BBC released this article talking about how loneliness is an epidemic problem in the UK, costing £6,000 per person in health costs and local services. It's easy to feel that admitting to loneliness still has a stigma around it, which is surprising as an estimated 1.2 million people in the UK suffer with loneliness.
Feeling lonely can lead to feeling isolated or even depressed. If you’re finding that you aren’t talking to people on a regular basis, and you’re shutting yourself in your room, it can end up making you feel isolated. So how can you avoid loneliness and show yourself some love?
1. Talk to your friends and family. Being social makes us feel less lonely, even if it’s just over the phone. But face to face contact is the best at combatting loneliness – so go for a coffee together, or have a movie night with your friends.
2. Avoid spending all your time using technology and social media. As great as it is, it can make you feel distanced from the world. Get out there and talk to people, and instead of messaging your friends, ask to meet them in person for a drink.
3. Talk about it! The best way to overcome not just your loneliness, but the stigma around it, is to talk about it. This will encourage those around you to talk about it as well, chances are you'll find lots of people are having a similar experience.
4. Try something new. Even if you don't feel like it and even though it may seem really daunting at first, getting involved in activities where you can meet and hang out with other people is a great way of banishing the blues and boosting your self esteem. Search through the societies here at the SU to see if there's something that interests you, or even check out our volunteering opportunites and get yourself some of that feel-good factor.
The best way to solve a problem is by preventing it, so stay social! If you’re ever feeling like your loneliness is too much, come and talk to our Advice Team here at the SU, or the Wellbeing and Counselling Service at the university. We’re here to help you.
Let us know how you deal with loneliness, and let’s start the conversation going now.