I struggled with social anxiety for several years leading up to the COVID-19 pandemic, so being restricted to my home was something I had already experienced by the time lockdown began. It was a setback in my recovery and it limited my ability to communicate with not only my friends but my family too. After a year of being told not to meet with others, I couldn’t wait to start doing my favourite activities again. However, it turned out that this wasn’t as easy as I had expected.
Adapting to life as the restrictions eased felt stressful and I couldn’t see how connecting with others would make a difference for me. To overcome this, I set myself the challenge of making at least one connection every day. I started with something simple, like messaging a family member or saying hello to somebody in the street. Once I felt comfortable with this, I could expand my horizons and start to make connections outside of my home.
I had wanted to try volunteering for a while so approaching local charities and groups was something that helped me make new connections and meet new people. I found that I was gaining more confidence with each small step and I felt a lot better than in previous months. If anyone else has found themselves in a similar position during a lockdown, making a small connection each day is a great way to boost your well-being and open yourself up to new opportunities.