Welcome back to Tuesday Tips, where we gather insights from staff, participants, and community partners on navigating life’s challenges with resilience and strength. Today, we’re sharing valuable advice from the Connecticut Collaborative to End Loneliness and an Mental Health Connecticut (MHC) participant. 

Studies show that 60% of Americans are feeling lonely. The federal government estimates that someone dies from conditions resulting from loneliness every three minutes. The Connecticut Collaborative to End Loneliness was convened by For All Ages to raise awareness of the problem and eliminate the stigma, engage healthcare professionals, and address young adult and older adult loneliness. They believe that by working together we can significantly improve health and save lives.  

Check out these tips from The Connecticut Collaborative to End Loneliness: An alliance to foster social connection across CT.

  • Engage in Positive Social Connection: Research shows that positive social connections play a vital role in improving mental health. Take the time to connect with friends, family, and community members in meaningful ways. 
  • Nurture Relationships: Invest time in nurturing your relationships. Whether it’s spending quality time with loved ones or reaching out to someone who may be feeling lonely, cultivating strong connections is essential for overall well-being. 
  • Volunteer and Serve: Look for opportunities to give back to your community. Volunteering not only benefits those in need but also provides a sense of purpose and fulfillment. 
  • Participate in Local Groups: Joining local groups based on hobbies, fitness, profession, or religion can help you build a supportive community and foster new connections. 
  • Limit Social Media Use: While social media can be a valuable tool for staying connected, excessive use can contribute to feelings of loneliness and isolation. Set boundaries and prioritize real-life interactions. 
  • Take the FLOURISH Challenge: Become a Social Health Champion by taking the For All Ages FLOURISH Challenge. Visit forallages.org/flourish-challenge to learn more and take the challenge. 
  • Learn from the Surgeon General: Explore the US Surgeon General’s Social Connection webpage to gain further insights into loneliness and social isolation. 

By incorporating these strategies into your daily life, you can proactively combat loneliness and strengthen your social connections, ultimately enhancing your overall well-being. 

Karen, a participant at Mental Health Connecticut’s Independence Center, shares her personal strategies for maintaining wellness, even in times of distress:  

  1. Recognize What’s Within Your Control: Karen emphasizes the importance of recognizing when things are beyond your control. Instead of worrying excessively, she focuses on talking through challenges and being gentle with herself during difficult times. 
  1. Prioritize Self-Kindness: Karen underscores the significance of being kind and gentle with oneself, especially during tough moments. Practicing self-compassion and making dietary changes for overall health are integral aspects of her self-care routine. 
  1. Value Support Systems: For Karen, Mental Health Connecticut’s Independence Center serves as a crucial support system. She highlights the reciprocal nature of support, emphasizing the importance of both receiving and offering support within the community. Karen maintains that Mental Health Connecticut’s Independence Center is a “very important part of my support system. If people are working on their recovery, they will understand that. The Independence Center not only supports me, but I support it. Supporting my support system”. 

Remember, facing life’s challenges is a journey best undertaken with compassion, support, and a commitment to self-care. 

Stay tuned for more Tuesday Tips to enrich your journey towards mental wellness. 

Together, we thrive. 

We want to hear from you! Pick a Tuesday in May and share a post with your #TuesdayTips. Be sure to tag @mentalhealthct and use the hashtag #LetsFaceIt and #TuesdayTips so we can share your post and spread some tips for wellness far and wide!     

Follow For All Ages and the Connecticut Collaborative to End Loneliness on social media: @ForallAgesOrg @endlonelinessct CT Collaborative to End Loneliness