Avoid loneliness with charity's top tips

Following Loneliness Awareness Week (June 14 to 20), Lincolnshire housebuilder Barratt Homes teamed up with Midlands-based charity The Wolfpack Project to provide top tips and advice on how to deal with loneliness.

Charity founder Damien Reynolds (back) and employee Alex Inkley (front) with a Wolfpack project laptop
Charity founder Damien Reynolds (back) and employee Alex Inkley (front) with a Wolfpack project laptop

Moving to a new area or even a different county as a solo buyer can be daunting without friends or family nearby, so the developer is striving to ensure its residents don’t feel isolated after starting a new chapter in their new home.

Jan Ruston, sales director at Barratt Homes North Midlands, said: “Moving to a new home can be a busy period so life beyond the move-in date can sometimes be overlooked.

“Our developments are home to tight-knit and supportive neighbours and we pride ourselves on not just high-quality homes but also on a sense of togetherness between those who have recently moved in to a development.”

“We want residents at our developments to feel that they are an important part of the communities in which we build and are able to make new friends, especially after the last fifteen months in and out of lockdown. That’s why we’ve teamed up with The Wolfpack Project to ensure a happy move all round.

The Wolfpack Project, which has a branch in the Midlands, is dedicated to reducing loneliness in young people and providing resources to help those who are feeling isolated.

Damien Reynolds, founder and CEO of The Wolfpack Project, said: “Moving to unfamiliar towns and other communities can be an overwhelming experience for even the most happiest of homebuyers, which is why we want to encourage anyone who is feeling lonely to tell someone and make progress in getting back to their old selves.”

Here are The Wolfpack Project’s top tips to combat loneliness:

- Speak to someone about how you are feeling

- Talk to your doctor, a therapist, or another health care professional. Chronic loneliness isn’t limited to feelings of social isolation and alienation from others - it is often tied to ongoing and deeply rooted negative beliefs about yourself that can eventually lead to other medical and emotional problems. Let someone know what’s going on.

- Proactively seek out interaction: Engage with other people in a positive, healthy way. Even though it may be difficult, try making the effort to connect with others. Volunteering, hobby clubs, workout groups and other opportunities can help boost self-esteem and provide a safe and satisfying way to connect with others.

- Embrace the outdoors: Getting some exercise and sunlight can be beneficial for those who are feeling isolated. Getting active and out in the sunshine can help elevate endorphins and serotonin. These “brain hormones” can boost mood, help improve sleep and make people feel happier.

- Find others who may feel the same: Find a support group - especially if loneliness is a side effect of some other personal issues you might be dealing with such as a relationship break-up or chronic illness. Receiving support and encouragement from others who may share similar feelings, could help ease symptoms of chronic loneliness.

For those who may suspect they are experiencing loneliness, The Wolfpack Project have provided some common symptoms including:

- Inability to connect with others on a deeper level. You may have friends and family in your life but engagement with them is at surface level.

- No close or ‘best’ friends. You have friends, but they are casual friends or acquaintances and you feel you can find no one who truly "gets" you.

- Experiencing overwhelming feeling of isolation regardless of where you are and who’s around. You can be at a party surrounded by dozens of people and you feel separate and disengaged. At work or just walking down the street, you may feel alienated and alone.

- Negative feelings of self-doubt and self-worth. Does it feel like you are always less than enough? These long-term feelings are another possible symptom of chronic loneliness.

Barratt Homes North Midlands recently made a £1,000 donation to The Wolfpack Project as part of its Community Fund scheme which supports a different charity each month in the counties in which it builds.

For more information about properties available in Lincolnshire, call the Barratt Homes sales team on 033 3355 8472 or visit www.barratthomes.co.uk.