Spectrum Life is our Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) which is a confidential, neutral service provided by an external company to support colleagues at the University, including free counselling.
Here are some support options and resources available to you if you or someone you know is experiencing loneliness.
Ideas that may help if you're feeling lonely at the moment
- Don't be afraid to reach out to people to tell them how you're feeling.
- Suggest a catch-up with a friend, family member or colleague you haven't spoken to recently.
- Write down your thoughts and try to challenge any unhelpful ones.
- Take some small steps to engage in something new like a new group or volunteering opportunity.
- Regularly schedule in some time for some fun activities.
- Set some really simple goals that might help you feel better in the longer-term.
- Be kind to yourself. Self-care is so important to our general wellbeing levels.
Trying something new / making new connections
- Staff Life is a great place to start if you fancy trying something new. You can explore activities taking place at Streatham and St Luke's. Joining a group is a great way to meet new people. There are online and physical options to suit your current circumstances.
- Networks are a great way of meeting new people, so we would highly recommend exploring the internal networks on offer. For example, EDI plays host to a variety of staff and student networks.
- The University of Exeter Chaplaincy can offer support and an opportunity to connect, regardless of your regious views.
- Meetup is a platform for finding and building local communities. People use Meetup to meet new people, learn new things, find support, get out of their comfort zones, and pursue their passions, together.
- Spectrum Life is our Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) which is a confidential, neutral service provided by an external company to support colleagues at the University. You could sign up for some free counselling sessions to work through how you're feeling.
- NHS: Every Mind Matters - Loneliness
- Mind: Tips to manage loneliness
- NHS: Coping with Loneliness during Covid-19
- The Access to Work Mental Health Support - a confidential service delivered by Remploy funded by the Department of Works and Pensions is available at no charge to any employees with depression, anxiety, stress or other mental health issues affecting their work.
- NHS Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT)- an NHS support you can refer yourself directly to for talking therapies, such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), counselling, other therapies and guided self-help. Local IAPT services are listed below:
- NHS Talkworks (Devon)
- NHS Outlook South West (Cornwall)
- Steps2Wellbeing (Dorset)
- Plymouth Options (Plymouth)
- Somerset Partnership Talking Therapies (Somerset)
- VitaMinds (Bristol, N.Somerset, S.Gloucestershire)
- B&NES Talking Therapies (Bah & N.E. Somerset)
- If you live outside of these areas, you can find your local service using the NHS IAPT Search Tool.
- Make yourself available to talk to. You can simply say that you're here if they ever want to chat. Just knowing someone is there for them can be very reasurring.
- Reach out. Send a text or make a call to check-in.
- Ask open questions about themselves. This shows you care about them and their wellbeing.
- If you can, invite them to join you to do something - perhaps a coffee or a walk.
- Encourage them to stay active when they can.
- If they say that they're feeling lonely, you could help them find new connections - perhaps via a local/online group to join, or point out some of the resources in the above section, such as Meetup.