“People put on a good front,” says Dr Taylor. “They think, ‘I’ve got lots of friends – I can’t be lonely.’ That’s so not true. Just being with people physically does not ease the loneliness.”
- Get involved in your community by trying a new hobby or joining a club or adult education class.
- Volunteering gets you out of the house and gives you the chance to give back to the community and meet people. Visit volunteeringnz.org.nz
- Get a pet.
- Start a conversation with a stranger on the bus, in a café, at the supermarket.
- Reconnect with family and friends. Do it by phone or email if they don’t live nearby.
- Exercise, eat well and get enough sleep. Limit your alcohol intake because it can make you feel worse.
- Seek support from your GP or talk to a counsellor.
Photos by Alamy and Gallery Stock/Snapper Media.