Many people feel lonely right now. You may be separated from family and friends, separated from co-workers, worksites, and your usual patients or clients, spending time in self-isolation, or worried about spreading the virus to others. During pandemics, many healthcare workers also experience stigma from others who think they’ll get sick if they spend time with a healthcare worker. Any of these situations can take a real toll on your mental health.
Changes in how things are done—both changes at work and changes in your daily life—are constant reminders that we’re still in the middle of a pandemic and life isn’t the same. These changes can amplify difficult feelings like loneliness, uncertainty, fear, despair, and hopelessness. This is a normal part of any traumatic or challenging situation and you aren’t alone.
Loneliness can be particularly hard right now because we have to take public health measures into consideration. It isn’t just a matter of meeting up with a friend or joining a group to meet new people. While loneliness can be very uncomfortable, it’s a feeling. Simple skills and strategies to boost resilience can help lower the volume on feelings like loneliness and help you find well-being despite separation from people you care about.
One of the most important things you can do is reach out when you need it. It takes a lot of courage to ask for help, but finding the right support can help you feel better. Here are some services and support to try:
While loneliness can be very uncomfortable, it’s a feeling. Simple skills and strategies to boost resilience and help lower the volume on feelings like loneliness and help you find well-being despite separation from people you care about.
Your physical health and mental health are connected. When you fall behind on healthy eating, sleep, and exercise, you might notice that negative thoughts come up more often. It may be harder to manage stress and harder to find hope and optimism. Taking care of yourself as well as you can make a big difference.
Many people doubt their own strength and resilience in the middle of an emergency. When you feel overwhelmed, think of one thing you can realistically do right now (or by the end of the day) to help yourself feel better. For example, you could message a friend, go for a walk, call a support line, spend time on a hobby, or write a meal plan for the upcoming workweek.
Distraction can be a useful tool when you just feel really bad but can’t fix the problem right away. Watch a movie or show, read your favourite book, listen to music—whatever helps to interrupt negative thoughts and focus your attention on something else.
Free resources to help with your mental health available from your phone