Feeling Lonely at Christmastime

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, Feeling Lonely at Christmastime

Although for some people Christmas can be a magical family time for others it’s a cause of sadness and worry.  When you’re on your own at this time of year seeing others around you enjoying this special time together can make your feelings of loneliness even more profound.  Loneliness is never far away from any of us, therefore we should all look out for each other during the holiday period.

, Feeling Lonely at Christmastime

Talk to Someone

The first thing you should try to do if you are feeling lonely is talk to someone.  Whether it’s a friend, family member or neighbour, talk to them and tell them how you’re feeling.  On many occasions, if someone has a spare seat at their Christmas table they’re more than willing to invite to offer it to someone in need of somewhere to go.  Another way to find people to talk to is to join social groups in your area.  Local libraries, community centres and churches can be good places to find these.  Often, you will find others are in the same boat and will feel delighted that they now have a friend for company at this time of year.  If you feel you have no one in real life to talk to remember the Samaritans are open all over Christmas ready to take your call.  1 in 3 calls received at this time of year are due to isolation.

Anyone can contact Samaritans any time for free from any phone on 116 123. This number is free to call and will not show up on your phone bill. Or email jo@samaritans.org or go to www.samaritans.org to find details of your local branch where you can talk to one of their trained volunteers face to face.

Find a Christmas Community Lunch

Another way to ease loneliness during the festive period is to join a Christmas Community Lunch.  They are organised in most areas.  Older people can find a Community Christmas in their area by searching the events page on their website.  But many towns organise community lunches for all areas.  Contact your local town council, library, community centre and local churches to find out if any events are taking place in your area.

, Feeling Lonely at Christmastime

Volunteer

If you’re willing and able volunteering is a great way to ease the loneliness and help time pass more quickly at this time of year.  You could volunteer to help out at a community lunch or even to drive others to these events.  Crisis need 10,000 volunteers each Christmastime.  Crisis at Christmas is a unique volunteer effort that provides immediate help for homeless people at a critical time of year.  By volunteering with Crisis this Christmas you can make a real difference to people experiencing homelessness.  Hospitals welcome visitors and volunteers at Christmastime too.   Look out for local events needing volunteers in your local newspaper.  Your time and skills are valuable to others as are you.

Attend an Event

We often think that Christmas time is all about being home with the family but of course there are events taking place too.  Look out for these in your local “What’s on” guide.  Coastal areas often organise “Christmas Day”, “Boxing Day” and “New Year’s Day” dips into the cold sea which are great community events with a lovely atmosphere.  Many areas are also still organising their  Park Run on Christmas day, whether you attend as a volunteer marshal, a runner or a spectator you will feel the warmth achieved by spending time with other people.

, Feeling Lonely at Christmastime

Find Love at Christmas Time

Perhaps you’re looking for more than companionship and friendship this Christmastime.  The period between the months of October to March is a popular time for singles to find romance.  No one is too old to look for love, just look at 101 years young, Eric on First Dates, there are mature dating sites that you can join.  It can be difficult to begin a new relationship after a complicated break up or losing a loved partner, but if you’re now feeling ready to look for love then older dating could be for you.  If you have already signed up to a dating site then now is the time to put more effort into updating your profile and photos, love could be around the corner.

 

Lonely or Alone?

Remember being alone and being lonely aren’t the same thing.  Circumstances may mean that you are all alone this Christmas but perhaps you can find ways to happily pass the time on your own.  If this is how you’ve chosen to spend your Christmas then be sure to do all of the things that you can get away with on your own-some- watch the TV and films that you want to without arguing over the remote, cook and eat what you want for lunch and keep that box of chocolates all to yourself. Sam Owen, author of  Resilient Me: How to Worry Less and Achieve More, reminds us that Spending time alone in your own company reinforces your self-worth and is often the number-one way to replenish your resilience reserves.”  Equally, perhaps you are not alone this Christmas but are still feeling lonely, in that case talk to someone and see how you can change your life for the better in the future.

Support

I’ll end with a reminder that if you are struggling with the feeling of loneliness this Christmas time please talk to someone.  Imagine if you were on the other side and someone confided in you that they were lonely you would be happy to help.  If you’re feeling more than loneliness and begin to get depressed then contact MIND.   MIND is an organisation that aims to make sure nobody has to face a mental health problem by themselves. The MIND infoline is 0300 123 3393.  Another site I’d recommend is Elefriends, a supportive online community, a safe place to listen, share and be heard.

Anyone can contact Samaritans any time for free from any phone on 116 123. This number is free to call and will not show up on your phone bill. Or email jo@samaritans.org or go to www.samaritans.org to find details of your local branch where you can talk to one of their trained volunteers face to face.

I wish you all a healthy, warm and happy Christmas time and New Year, you’re in my thoughts.

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, Feeling Lonely at Christmastime

1 Comment

  1. , Feeling Lonely at Christmastime
    Margaret Gallagher
    December 28, 2018 / 5:40 pm

    So important to call on people over the festive season – a quick hello over the phone or a cuppa and a chat really does make such a difference

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