According to abc.net.au , the 2018 Loneliness Report revealed that 1 in 4 people are lonely.
Imagine that number from a country with approximately 25 million inhabitants. That’s 6,250,000 people!
Other highlights (or perhaps we should say lowlights) of the report state:
One in two people sometimes or always feel alone and 30 per cent of people say they don't belong to a friendship group, the report found.
A recent ‘Relationships Australia’ study found that one in ten Australians currently lack social support.
Earlier studies found that somewhere between 17 and 60 per cent of Australians say they are sometimes lonely.
Exact figures on loneliness and isolation can be hard to obtain, because respondents are sometimes reticent to name their loneliness due to stigma, says Dr Michelle Lim of Swinburne University, lead Australian Loneliness Report researcher and chair of the scientific advisory committee “Australian Coalition to End Loneliness”.
There are many side effects that link loneliness to poor health and lack of well-being. According to the article, higher levels of loneliness are associated with higher levels of social interaction anxiety, less social interaction, poorer psychological wellbeing and poorer quality of life, the Australian Loneliness Report found.
Research has found that loneliness increases the likelihood of mortality by 26 per cent.
Physical symptoms of loneliness can include lack of energy, sleep problems, diet problems, headaches, illness, aches and pains and worsening of medical conditions, according to Lifeline.
There are also links between loneliness and poor mental health, including depression, lower levels of self-worth, life satisfaction and subjective wellbeing, according to Relationships Australia.
According to Lifeline, the suicide prevention service, loneliness can also lead to substance abuse or negative feelings — such as hopelessness and thoughts of suicide.
If this is ringing alarm bells for you, then it’s time to sit down and sort out a solution!
Ask yourself, “If I do nothing about my loneliness, how long will this last?”
What is it costing me in experiences, whether it is meeting new friends, new activities, personal growth?”
“What would my life be like if I knew how to break this cycle that keeps me stuck in this funk?”
Essentially this is the basis to understanding that if you are feeling lonely, and that you accept that fact, then you already have a foundation from where to begin building a new life away from loneliness .
It does take a leap of faith to stretch yourself into a courageous mindset and break the habits that are keeping you stuck in loneliness, but little by little, you can make it happen.
If you want to break the cycle of loneliness but need help, please don’t wait. Reach out to me now.
Contact: David Gillman - The Mindset Mechanic