Loneliness Awareness Week
As this week is Loneliness Awareness Week, I have been thinking about how loneliness can affect peoples lives.
During the first lockdown I felt lonely, anxious and a whole bunch of other feelings. It was really hard not to see friends and family when I was feeling that way.
I changed my support timings so I had two sessions a week rather than one, so I could see a friendly face. ENABLE Scotland had taken over a new service in my area, so there was more flexibility with my staff members which helped.
When lockdown eased, I was aware I needed to get out and about more. So I would find wee excuses to stay out more, like go to Costa Coffee after my hospital appointment or go for a drive down to the beach.
Something that really helped me feel less lonely was when the ENABLE Scotland Ayr Branch started Zoom sessions. Last summer, they had a marquee which allowed me to meet a small group of friends face to face. From that, a group of us started to meet up for regular lunches at the weekends.
In my role at ENABLE Scotland, I understand the importance of people not feeling that they are on their own. My priority was to make sure that I called our members who were not so confident using Zoom, to check in and make sure they are Ok.
I am also working with the ACE groups which help with loneliness. ACE is a great place to be able to talk about the issues you are facing, and know that you are not alone.
If you are feeling lonely, there are lots of ways ENABLE Scotland can help.