Many things during this time are new. Covid-19 has brought many new feelings, ideas, events into this world; but loneliness is not one of them. 54% of Canadians reported feeling lonely or isolated during the coronavirus lockdown, a stark contrast to the 18% of Canadians in a 2019 survey.
Loneliness is a difficult feeling to combat, especially during time such as these. These are things that have helped me in the past and are still helping me today:
Go Outside: This doesn’t need to be a big long hike or forest trekking adventure. Just take 10 minutes out of your day and go walk around your block. Try to stay off your phone. Just remain wholly in the moment. (Please know and follow the recommended Social Distancing Precautions)
Spend Time with Your Family (furry, feathered, or otherwise): Loneliness is affecting us all, this is a time to spend time with those you care about. Turn on some music and dance around the kitchen, pick 5 random items and make a story out of them, have a catwalk; try to make the craziest outfit out of your closet in 25 mins, play a card game, go on a walk. Create those memories!
Video Call Friends and Family: Just because you can’t see friends and family in person doesn’t mean you can’t talk to them face to face. For me, sometimes the texts and voice calls just don’t feel real. There are any number of apps with a video chat option (Facetime, Skype, Discord, etc).
Cause a Smile: Make cookies for your neighbors, put up your christmas lights a few months early, make donations, organize a ‘social distancing parade’, put up a “Ministry of Silly Walks” sign, put notes on people’s cars, make a giant chalk portrait of Count Dracula. Do something that will bring a few smiles. It will be worth it. (Please know and follow the recommended Social Distancing Precautions)
Practice Self-Care: Spend some time taking care of yourself. Take a bath, do a face mask, listen to music and dance, dye your hair, do some exercise, play an instrument, act out your favourite movie scene, learn something new. Do something for YOU! Don’t worry about looking silly, or what others think of you, or anything like that. And if you do, that’s ok! Just notice it and continue. Don’t get down on yourself. This is about YOU.
1 Korzinski, Dave. “Loneliness and Social Isolation Index.” Angus Reid Institute, Angus Reid Institute, 17 June 2019, angusreid.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/2019.06.14_Loneliness-and-Social-Isolation-Index.pdf.
2 “Majority (54%) of Canadians Say Physical Distancing Has Left Them Feeling Lonely or Isolated.” Ipsos, Global News, 10 Apr. 202AD, www.ipsos.com/en-ca/news-and-polls/Majority-Of-Canadians-Say-Physical-Distancing-Has-Left-Them-Feeling-Lonely-Or-Isolated.
Note: The Free Your Mind Mental Health Society is an independent youth-led organization. The contents of this blog are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. In the event of a medical emergency, please call your doctor or 911 or other local emergency numbers immediately.