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Loneliness can be a struggle at the best of times but is even more of a concern for some during this self-isolation period of the Coronavirus pandemic.
If you live alone or are the type of person who is usually very social, active and loves to go out and have human interaction then you may find these next few weeks tough to get through. It is particularly concerning for elderly people who are known to struggle much more with loneliness as a whole, which is why I have put together these tips to provide you with some help in adjusting.
Stay In Touch With Loved Ones
Particularly important for the elderly and those who are struggling with their mental health at this time. Ensure you give your loved ones a phone call, a video call or even just a social media/Whatsapp message once a day to stay in touch, ask how your loved ones are doing and speak about how you are feeling too. Communication and social interaction can really lift our mood, help us to stay positive and feel supported and loved. Seen a joke that made you laugh? or a funny meme? Share it with your family members to keep their spirits up.
Alot of elderly are now also on Facebook, Whatsapp and social media, so if you want to save each other's phone minutes/money then why not use the video calling feature to not only speak to your loved ones, but see them too? You could even do activities together. Include your elderly family and make them feel involved to prevent them experiencing too much loneliness.
Check out this fantastic idea by 'Speechy' for ideas on how to make some great conversations with loved ones.
Social media can be a great way to pass time and have fun! If, like me, you're finding the constant news updates on Facebook and Twitter depressing then make yourself a TikTok account and get creative with the videos, impersonations and video challenges on there. You can also do duets with your family members on Tik Tok, even if they are not in the same house as you. Grandparents/Parents are now on TikTok too, so why not create them an account too? and talk them through the basic features over a video call? It can be lots of fun for all of the family regardless of their age.
Just because you can't leave the house, doesn't mean you can't keep active! If you are fortunate to have a garden then now is the perfect time to make the most of it! Sit outside in the sunshine for a bit, go for a walk around the garden a few times and bring your activities and exercises outside to the garden if the house is driving you mad.
Most gyms have created online virtual classes that you can follow along with via your laptop/TV and there are plenty of Youtube videos to keep you active and fit during this isolation period.
Don't forget to ensure your elderly family members are regularly getting up and walking around the house too, it is important for them to keep moving even though they are at home.
Learn A Skill
With Youtube at your fingertips you can learn SO many new skills for FREE! Is your grandparent keen on gardening? knitting? even cleaning? Why not create them a free Youtube account that they can access from their phone, laptop or (in some cases) their TV? Now is the perfect time for them to learn a new skill, a hobby, or a new way of doing something to keep them occupied.
This applies to you too! Always wanted to know how to do those pesky DIY jobs? Take specific photos? Or cook a particular meal? Get yourself onto Youtube and you will be surprised at how much you can learn during these next few weeks.
Read A Book
I'm sure you have lots of old books that you've never read, or haven't read for a long time! This is the time to get them all out and give them a read. I find reading is a great way to learn or escape reality for a little while and it can even make you smile! Choose uplifting books that will make you feel good and take some time to put your phone on silent, chill and enjoy your book in peace and quiet.
I don't know about you but if all else fails I watch Netflix! With so much to choose from on there you're bound to find a film, series or documentary that you or your family members would love to watch! If you have a family account why not create one for your elderly family members too? Netflix can be a great way to pass the time and prevent loneliness and boredom.