This year's Loneliness Awareness Week takes place from the 15th to 21st June 2020.
It’s a chance to raise awareness of loneliness and encourage people to speak about it openly. It’s a powerful message that resonates with many, and something that Churchill Retirement Living feels strongly about supporting.
We all feel lonely at times – it’s a normal human emotion. We’re biologically wired for social contact, and loneliness is our signal that we need more.
You don’t have to be on your own to feel lonely. You might feel lonely in a relationship or while spending time with friends or family, especially if you don’t feel understood or cared for by the people around you. Other people might choose to be alone and live happily without much social contact.
When it comes to the older generation, loneliness is a growing problem for those who no longer have a community, family or friends to keep them company.
The lockdown has forced many people of all ages to re-evaluate the places they live in, the communities and social networks around them, and their connections with family.
At Churchill we believe that moving to a retirement living development can be a positive step towards banishing loneliness. We’ve seen first-hand how much our Owners enjoy the benefits of a happier, safer, more independent and sociable lifestyle, with a built in sense of community.
What can you do to help tackle loneliness?
1. Post about loneliness on social media
We all have different experiences of loneliness, and to better understand loneliness we need to be open and talk about it. Share a post about loneliness with your own experiences or some tips to help others, and use the hashtags #LetsTalkLoneliness and #LonelinessAwarenessWeek.
2. Build your understanding
Increase your understanding and help others feel more connected. You can check out the tips in Loneliness Awareness Week’s loneliness guide for ways to do this, and of course you can come up with your own ideas too.
3. Start a conversation
Telling someone that you’re lonely is an important step, and it’s also important to think about how we talk about loneliness.
We still use words like ‘admitting’ to and ‘suffering’ from, which can unintentionally add to the belief that something is wrong with us. There is absolutely no shame in feeling lonely, so changing the language we use around loneliness is a positive and liberating step forward.
The more we talk about loneliness, the more we can accept it and move towards a society where it can be spoken about openly.