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Exploring loneliness, anxiety, grief and stress

UrHere is a mental health and suicide prevention campaign that aims to build awareness of support pathways available to young people in times of increased stress, suicide risk and isolation.  This month on our digital platforms we exploring the themes of loneliness, anxiety, grief and stress.

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Anxiety

Anxiety can be the result of many different factors, some in isolation and others combined, left untreated it can lead to struggles managing day to day life.

There is no single cause for anxiety but some of the reasons you might experience anxiety include;

  • Relationship worries
  • School stress
  • Bullying
  • Grief and loss
  • Family concerns
  • Genetic traits
  • Coping styles

Anxiety is a feeling of overwhelming worry or distress when faced with danger or a scenario that is uncomfortable or out of the ordinary. Anxiety can become a problem when it is intense, causes distress and worry, lasts for a long period of time and impacts daily living. Anxiety left unattended or treated can cause a change in a young person’s thinking, bodily sensations, behaviour and in how they respond and react to things.

Indicators of anxiety

  • Feeling nervous, restless, wound up
  • Having a sense of impending danger, panic or doom
  • Having an increased heart rate
  • Breathing rapidly (hyperventilation)
  • Sweating
  • Trembling
  • Feeling weak, tired, easily fatigued
  • Trouble concentrating or thinking, mind going blank
  • Being irritable
  • Having muscle tension
  • Difficulty controlling feelings of worry
  • Having trouble sleeping, such as difficulty falling or staying asleep and restlessness.

Some things that can help

1. Maintain a healthy lifestyle, drink plenty of water, healthy diet and regular exercise or activity

2. Mindfulness and meditation; deep breathing, reflection

3. Avoid drugs and alcohol overuse

4. Connect with things you enjoy or like doing (nature, reading, music)

5. Talk too and confide in someone you trust, share how you are feeling

6. Positive affirmations, self talk

7. Take care of your sleep routine

Reaching out and seeking support can help you manage your anxiety and your day to day activities.

Other articles on anxiety can be found at Kids Helpline and ReachOut.


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Loneliness

Loneliness can be feeling and being alone, regardless of the amount of contact you have with other people. It can stop you from connecting with those around you and can be the cause of negative feelings of self-doubt and low self-worth.

Tips for people experiencing loneliness: 

1. Explore your feelings

Thinking deeply about how you are feeling and what it means to be alone Thinking things through can sometimes make it easier to navigate those feelings and find comfort with yourself.

2. Make the most of your interactions

Simply being around other people doesn’t relieve loneliness but making sure you are connecting to the people you are with can. You could try asking others questions, sharing your emotions and talking about things that matter to you.

3. Do something you love!

Getting creative can help people cope with feelings of isolation and loneliness. It can also help you to express your emotions without (spoken) words, which can have a lot of benefits if you struggle to share them aloud.

4. Reach out for help

If you are feeling low and hopeless there is help available. Use the numbers and websites below to reach out.

Below are numbers and websites available for you to reach out for support.

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