By Matthew Holman, Mental Health and Wellbeing Consultant.
Do you ever feel lonely? You are not alone in this feeling. According to the Mental Health Foundation, loneliness affects millions of people in the UK, every year. Loneliness is a key driver of poor mental health.
During the pandemic research from the Mental Health Foundation found that loneliness has been exacerbated by the Covid crisis. The Foundation has been tracking loneliness levels in the UK during the pandemic and found the experience has been much higher with devastating impact. Loneliness has been an important factor contributing to higher levels of distress, resulting from people’s sense of isolation and reduced ability to connect with others. Further polling also found that loneliness was one of the leading issues that the public felt needed to be addressed.
According to Mind Charity feeling lonely can also have a negative impact on your mental health, especially if these feelings have lasted a long time. Some research suggests that loneliness is associated with an increased risk of certain mental health problems, including depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, sleep problems and increased stress.
This brings us to the theme for this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week. The week will raise awareness of the impact of loneliness on our mental wellbeing and the practical steps we can take to address it. Reducing loneliness is a major step towards a mentally healthy society.
Overcoming loneliness is not easy for everyone, but there are actions that we can all take to improve how we feel. These simple actions are outlined below:
Keep in touch with those around you
Join a group
Do things that you enjoy
Share your feelings
Help someone else feel connected
Previous years have seen Mental Health Awareness Week focus on stress, body image, kindness and connecting with nature.
In April 2022, Agiito signed a partnership with Matthew Holman, founder of Simpila Mental Health to provide additional support and guidance to us as a business in helping to shape the workplace for the employees.