When I worked as a nursing assistant in a local nursing facility, I saw lots of loneliness. People who were no longer able to be cared for by family or friends. They were placed in the home with promises from family that they would return only to find themselves left alone. Some made friends with other residents while some sat by the window each day watching and waiting to see a familiar friendly face that would never show up.
Loneliness can affect anyone, without regard to age, gender, or background. It can be a result of various circumstances, such as living far from loved ones, going through a difficult time, or experiencing social isolation.
To bring awareness to and combat this pervasive issue, National Cheer Up the Lonely Day is celebrated on July 11th each year. This day serves as a reminder to spread kindness, empathy, and compassion to those who may be feeling lonely.
Let’s explore a few valuable tips on how to cheer up yourself as well as others, especially those who may be experiencing loneliness.
Cheer Up Yourself
It’s important to recognize that loneliness can have an impact on your mental and physical well-being. Taking care of yourself is crucial to maintaining a positive mindset and a sense of belonging.
If you find yourself feeling lonely, try incorporating these practices into your daily routine:
- Engage in self-care: Dedicate time to activities that bring you joy and relaxation—read a book, take a bath, practice mindfulness. Remember, it doesn’t take hours. Five minutes is all you need to begin feeling better. Nor does it take boatloads of money to engage in a little self-care. Prioritize self-care to boost your spirits.
- Reach out to loved ones: Call or video chat with family and friends, even if they live far away. Share memories and stories and express your feelings. Strengthen those connections and bridge the gap created by distance, whether it’s hundreds of miles or right around the corner.
- Volunteer: Find local organizations or charities where you can lend a hand. Contributing to your community can create meaningful connections and combat loneliness.
Cheer Up Others
Knowing how to cheer up others is as important as being able to cheer up yourself. Here are a few tips on bringing a little joy to those who may feel lonely.
- Be present and empathetic: Take the time to listen actively to someone who is feeling lonely. Show genuine interest in their experiences and validate their emotions. A little compassion goes a long way.
- Plan social activities: Invite lonely individuals in your life to join you in social outings or group activities. Organize a game night, a picnic in the park, or a movie marathon. Inclusion fosters a sense of belonging and combats loneliness.
- Be kind: Surprise someone with a thoughtful gesture–a handwritten note, offering to help run errands, or preparing a home-cooked meal. Brighten someone’s day with random acts of kindness.
- Introduce them to new communities: Encourage lonely individuals to join clubs, groups, or organizations that align with their interests. Provide them with opportunities to meet like-minded people and expand their social network. Take this one step further and pick them up if they don’t have transportation and take them to attend group meetings.
- Online support: In today’s digital age, online communities can offer support and connection. Share resources such as online forums, social media groups, or virtual events where lonely individuals can engage with others who share their interests or experiences.
National Cheer Up the Lonely Day (July 11th) serves as a reminder that a little kindness can make a big difference in someone’s life. By incorporating self-care practices into our own lives and reaching out to those who are lonely, we can create a more inclusive and compassionate society.
*** Need more self-care tips including info on incorporating more laughter into your day, head on over to A Cup of Positivity on Facebook join the discussion.
Discover the Power of Self-Love
Self-love is not selfish.
Learning to love yourself is on of the most difficult things you will ever do on this journey called life. It’s okay to take care of your needs first. This doesn’t mean you aren’t going to take care of your To-Do list. It simply means you’re changing priorities so that you put yourself first.
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- Why self-love matters,
- Prompts to help you connect with who you are,
- Space to record your thoughts and feelings
This Journal is designed to encourage and empower you to set up your own self-love routine.
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Patricia “Pat” Bumpass is a ghostwriter, self-care advocate, author, and parent coach. She encourages and empowers women and parents with special needs kids to love themselves. Pat is North Carolina “born and bred” and loves coffee — hot or iced. You will often hear her say, “Twertles make me happy.” 🙂
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