Loneliness and Working From Home

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Loneliness affects millions of us with 1 in 4 adults in the UK experiencing feelings of loneliness some or all of the time. Prolonged feelings of loneliness can negatively affect our mental health. There is a lot of stigma around loneliness with more than a third of people admitting that they would never tell someone they feel lonely.

The Increase in Working from Home:

Due to Covid, many businesses adopted new working from home or hybrid working policies. Although restrictions have eased and employees are able to return to the office, a lot of businesses have kept these policies in place. Remote working promises flexibility and a better work-life balance for all, however, long-term remote working can be isolating and lead to feelings of loneliness.

Working from home can be especially difficult for those of us with certain risk factors. Some of the many risk factors outlined by The Mental Health Foundation include being single, from ethnic minority backgrounds and living alone.

Throughout lockdown, our Allstaff team all worked from home and found it to be very lonesome at times. We have compiled some of our top tips for fighting feelings of loneliness whilst working remotely.

Our Top Tips:
  • Keep active during your breaks.
    • Try going for a walk around your local park or take a trip to your local shop.
    • Try going for a run – why not attempt the 80 Miles in May challenge or the couch to 5K?
  • Put on background music.
    • Put on some non-distracting music or the TV.
  • Spend time with your pets.
    • Do your pets sit on your lap whilst you work?
    • Enjoy lots of cuddles with your pets between jobs.
  • Invest more time in video and telephone calls.
    • Try not to solely communicate with your teammates over emails, try and schedule a video meeting a couple of times a week for a catch-up.
    • Video calls and telephone calls can minimise miscommunication so there is no harm in discussing more important things over the phone.
  • Try a change of scenery.
    • Why not work remotely from your local cafe or library every now and then to give you a change of scenery and some small polite social interaction with strangers.
  • Make plans for after work.
    • If you live close to friends and family why not make plans for a coffee date one lunchtime?
  • Invest in a coworking space
    • Live with a partner or roommates? Do they also work from home? Why not create a shared workspace where you can engage in social interaction whilst working.

Everybody’s unique and different, and so is their Mental Health – one size does not fit all. As such these tips may not work for you. However, there are always people out there wanting to help.

Admitting you are struggling is the hardest part, so to make it the tiniest bit easier, we’ve attached links below to some organisations that are dedicated to helping you and others battle against mental health:

Mentalhealth.org.uk

mind.org.uk

https://www.rethink.org/

youngminds.org.uk

Why not share your story with others by using the hashtags #IveBeenThere and #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek. Share a photo of a time when you felt lonely and nobody knew.

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