Loneliness is something that can affect us all at some point in our lives. Here are our top tips for what you can do and where you can go for support:
Loneliness is an emotion like any other
Loneliness is as natural an emotion as joy and sadness. Everyone will feel lonely from time to time and it will invariably pass. It’s important not to blame yourself for feeling lonely; remember, often it’s a reaction to not having the right quality of connections you need at a particular time.
Identify what’s making you feel lonely
Figuring out what is making you feel lonely may help you find the right solutions to help you feel more connected. Reaching out to friends and family and opening up about how you feel may help kickstart this process and get you on your way to feeling better.
Being the first one to reach out can be daunting but more often than not, people are happy to hear from you. Send a text or email to a sympathetic friend or family member and invite them to meet.
If you don't have a friend or family member that you feel you can contact there are many free services that you can contact, we have listed a few below. Visit ASKLiON's mental health page for more support services and information.
The Silver Line - helpline for older people
The Silver Line Helpline is a free, confidential telephone service just for older people.
We provide friendship, conversation and support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Call Free: 0800 4 70 80 90
Whatever you're going through, a Samaritan will face it with you. We're here 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Shout is the UK's first and only free, confidential, 24/7 text messaging support service for anyone who is struggling to cope.
Text 'SHOUT' to 85258
Joining a local club or activity class can help you make new connections in your community. Or simply take the opportunity to follow-up something you’ve always wanted to try; groups such as local choirs, running clubs or even craft evenings often cater for all levels of ability and welcome new members.
Find Local Groups Using ASKLiON
ASKLiON contains hundreds of events and activities from all over Nottingham. Visit our Things to do page to find activities by interest, type or location. Alternatively use the search bar at the top of the page to quickly find what your searching for (e.g. coffee morning, craft groups, dementia social group, LGBT groups)
Your local community centres run a variety of groups and activities. Visit our community centres listings to find their address and contact information.
Nottingham City Libraries
Your local library may offer groups and activities that you can attend in a safe and quiet environment. You can even learn new skills or have books delivered to your door. Visit the ASKLiON libraries page for more information
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What is Community Together?
Community Together is a service from Nottingham City Council to support people who are 18+ to get involved with their local communities and develop friendships and connections.
Social interaction and physical activity have a positive effect on health and well-being, reducing the likelihood of the development of long-term medical conditions and significantly improving quality of life.
What do the Community Together Connectors Do
Our Community Together Connectors will work with you to provide support in introducing you to new opportunities and friendships within your area.
- They will carry out an initial ‘Getting to Know You’ meeting at your home, over the phone or at an alternate location where you are happy to meet
- The Connectors will collect basic information about any barriers that may be preventing you accessing your community
- They will signpost to any additional services that may benefit you or report any safety concerns if a home visit is carried out
- The Connector will discuss the various social groups and activities available and organise your first session attendance
The Community Connector may initially attend the first few events with you to provide support and introduce you to the groups. Support will be reduced as your confidence improves and are able to attend independently.
Referrals to a Community Connector
Community Together Service can accept referrals for people living in all wards of Nottingham City.
We are currently accepting referrals from all external partners, agencies and also self-referrals via the Nottingham Health and Care Point on 0300 131 0300
If you’re really struggling with loneliness and you think it’s affecting your physical or mental health, speak to your health visitor or GP about a referral to a social prescribing link worker.
Social prescribing link workers give people time, focusing on ‘what matters to me?’ to co-produce a simple personalised care and support plan, and support people to take control of their health and wellbeing.
Social prescribing is an all-age, whole population approach that works particularly well for people who:
- have one or more long term conditions
- who need support with low level mental health issues
- who are lonely or isolated
- who have complex social needs which affect their wellbeing.
You can use ASKLiON's Wellbeing Wheel tool to help you to improve your health and wellbeing by identifying what you want to achieve, what you can do differently to achieve your goal, and what advice, information and support will help you along the way.
Think about the following areas:
- Meet New People
- My Area
- Independent at Home
- Learning, Skills and Volunteering
- Support Groups
- Health and Wellbeing
It will take about 20 minutes to create a plan, and you can create a plan for yourself or on behalf of someone else (if you have their permission to do so).
When loneliness is severe or lasts a long time, it can negatively affect our mental health. Visit the ASKLiON mental health page to find free and local support, 24-hour support lines and help with other problems that may be affecting your mental health.
NottAlone - Mental Health Support For Young People
If you are struggling, open up and talk to other people in person, on the phone or by text. You deserve help and support and it is out there for you in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire.
What is NottAlone and who is it for?
It’s a website with local mental health advice & help for young people in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire, all in one place. If you are aged under 25, are a parent or carer, or a professional that supports young people, you can find information, advice and where to go to get help locally.
Giving your time to help others in need can be enormously rewarding. Not only can you help alleviate loneliness in the wider community, feeling useful and sharing skills are both powerful antidotes to loneliness.
Going outside into nature and taking gentle exercise has been proven to lift the feeling of loneliness. Visit our Nottingham Parks Page for information about your local park and current activities. There are also guided park walks, orienteering maps, tree trails, volunteering opportunities and more!