Tag Archives: lonely

Self Care Advent Calendar Day 18

Hi peeps – how are we all doing? With just one week to go to the big day, I’m hoping you’re all feeling pretty good.

A lot of what Christmas is about is relationships. If you’ve been watching a few cheesy Christmas films, you may have noticed that the heart of them all is the connection of one person with another, ¬†and our connections to other people, whether family or friends are a significant factor in our happiness.

As with most things, what works for one person may not work for another, but those relationships are important to everyone – it’s just the numbers that vary. Some of us are happy with just a few people in our circle, some need many. The more people you have, the more work it takes to keep those relationships alive, and sometimes people get lost along the way.

Think back over the last 10 years or so. Have there been significant people in your life that have drifted away? I’m not talking about those we have lost because they have passed away (as heart breaking as it is, we have to learn to move on without them) but those we have lost to distance, time or disagreements.

Confession time – I’m not the best person at staying in touch with friends. There is a little insecurity there…a part of me believes that they’re probably not that keen on me so I don’t want to push to make arrangements in case they think of it as a drag or hassle. There’s also a little laziness…it take effort to stay in touch with people. There’s a drop of negativity…they will probably not want to get together anyway, and there’s also a little selfishness…I quite like my own company and my own home. All of these things come together in me, meaning that it’s very easy for me to lose touch with people. If I want to maintain or renew these connections, I have to make a little effort to do so. But when I do, the rewards are outstanding.

Each New Year I make a list of New Year’s resolutions. One of them that remains on the list every year is to reconnect with at least one person who has been important to me.

It can be a little scary making that first step. What if they ignore us? What if they actively reject us? What if they don’t remember us? What if nothing comes of it? Well the answer to all of those questions have similar outcomes. If they go our way great, but if they don’t we are in no worse a position than when we started. That person is still not in our lives we now just have a clearer picture of why they’re not.

So today, my self care challenge to you is to reconnect with an old friend. Write them a message on facebook, send them a christmas card, text them, email them, hell, you could even give them or call or go and visit them. It can seem daunting but a quick hello could lead to the nicest Christmas you’ve had in ages.


Social anxiety can reduce your ability to make and maintain relationships. This isn’t something that you have to live with. Please seek help from a qualified therapist to change how you feel so that you can enjoy life to the max. You really do deserve it.

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Self Care Advent Calendar day 3

Here we are on day 3 clean, dressed and full of healthy food – so what now?

Get out.

It’s as simple and complicated as that – Get out.

My best advice is to go and be in nature with friends, but that’s not always possible, so let’s start small and build up.

I don’t care what the weather is like, or how you are feeling, getting outside is good for you (unless you’re severely immuno-compromised and should be in a bubble). There is something in out bodies that responds to being outside. Natural light helps our brains to operate properly, sunlight on out skin creates essential vitamins and feeling a breeze stimulates our mind. These things are good for us. Admittedly, it’s less pleasant if it’s cold, grey and rainy – but even then it’s still good for us. Billy Connolly once famously said ‘there is no bad weather, just the wrong clothes’, so go put on some ‘right clothes’ and get out there.

Maybe out there means nothing more than stepping outside your front door. If that’s all you can manage, that’s fine, but still go and stick your head out of the door. Maybe it means getting into the garden and tidying a few things up – pull up the odd dead plant or weed, encourage and nurture the ones you like, feed the birds or squirrels…whatever you fancy.

Maybe getting out can be more of a journey – a walk to the shop or the park. A little exercise can do wonders for your body and mind. Firstly you get the physical benefits, but then you get the mental ones too – the feeling of having achieved something.

Maybe it could be an adventure – now we’re really cooking! Is there somewhere within walking distance from your house that you’ve never been to? Who knows where this could lead. Maybe you find a new church or social club that you could be involved with, maybe you see a notice looking for volunteers, maybe a poster for a gig you want to see.

Then what if we venture out a little further…could we go somewhere we’ve never been and explore it by walking around it? Could we invite friends or family and turn it into a trip? Could there be food and drink? What about music or games? Maybe there are tents, yurts, tee pee’s or caravans… What have we started here???

Self care is about feeling and being the best version of yourself. If it helps you to be alone, to recharge by being in your own space, go out on your own. If you yearn to be around others, ask them to join you. If there is no-one in your life to join you, but you would like there to be, make that a priority whilst you are out and about. Look for opportunities to get involved in groups by volunteering or joining social events. Look for walking or running groups and take the plunge to join in. 20 seconds on bravery could change your life.

So put the screen away, grab a comfy pair of shoes and Get Out!


Social anxiety and agoraphobia can lead people to become stuck in their own homes. This is a tragic shame for anyone suffering from it and it’s unnecessary. There are ways you can be free to enjoy your life again. As a hypnotherapist I love helping people to get their life back, so don’t just suffer, make a change to make your life the best it can be.

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How to not stress out this Christmas

Merry Christmas from Talk Therapies

I’m reading a lot at the moment about how to ‘survive the holidays’ or how to ‘Cope at Christmas’.

This seems a little sad to me.

Aren’t the holidays about happiness, fun, enjoyment and togetherness?

Where are all the survival and coping skills needed? This is a day to celebrate and eat nice food – it’s not a war zone!

Here are a few simple guidelines to help you enjoy the holidays – after all they are meant to be a nice time.

1. Prepare

Write a list, go shopping (early or late if you can to avoid the crowds) and don’t get too hung up on anything on the list. If the shop hasn’t got the particular type of potato you want, get another one – I bet no-one notices! If they have run out of turkey, get chicken – it tastes better anyway.

2. Prepare some more

Cook dishes that you can cook in advance and heat up on the day. The more you have done before the celebration, the more time you have to enjoy it.

Wrap presents – check that you have batteries if you need them.

If you have people coming round, make sure you have enough chairs, plates, cutlery etc.

3. Delegate

You don’t own the holiday. Get people to help you. Yes it would be nice if they just did stuff without asking, but they’re not mind readers and they just need to be asked. Emphasis on the ask – asking will get you everywhere, telling will get you problems.

4. If you’re on your own and are likely to feel lonely, decide in advance what you are going to be doing.

Don’t sit and be sad – do stuff. Read a book, watch TV, go for a walk, redecorate a room, start your spring cleaning – do something!

Also appreciate the fact that you have this time to do exactly what you want. There will be someone in a crowded room, with frayed nerves and a headache who would give their left arm to be you right now.

5. If you’ve got people coming round and you think you’ll feel overwhelmed, plan in down time.

Too many people can be a bit much sometimes, so find a way to get some space – take a nap, go for a walk, hide in a bedroom for a bit whilst you get everyone else to clear away….

Also take some time out to appreciate the people you are with. These should be people you care about – Love even – so make sure you realise that you are lucky to have them with you.

6. Don’t expect it to be perfect.

Christmas is NEVER perfect except in films.

Things don’t always go to plan, people have arguments, kids get tired and whiny, people forget gifts, people don’t like gifts, food gets burned, people go to sleep – whatever happens, it’s OK.

Whatever type of celebration you have, enjoy it. It’s just one day, so make the most of it.

If you really can’t do that, then at least you know that it’s all going to be over soon, and you won’t have to think about it for another year!

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