Don’t worry, everyone at university feels lonely or alone at some point in their degree. This is because you are in a new environment, you are not familiar with the city, the campus, and you haven’t got your normal support group to help you or be there.
I have felt lonely more than a few times at uni. I have felt isolated, I have felt like I have had no-one there for me, but everyone feels alone at some point. We are constantly bombarded with the ‘perfect friendship’, the ‘perfect social group’.
We have been taught that having friends, being social, is the best thing for us and that being lonely, is undesirable, so when we are lonely, we think that something is wrong with us, when there is nothing wrong. Sometimes we need to be by ourselves to reconnect with our mind, to recenter and balance out what we feel.
If you feel lonely at uni, it is best to talk with someone, maybe the counselling support that the uni has, if they do have one. If not speak to someone who you are close to either at uni, or home. If you let people know how you are feeling, then someone knows. It is best to let people know what you are feeling than to suffer in silence. It’s easy to not speak, it takes courage to tell someone how you are feeling.
My advice to help lessen the effects of loneliness are; find people who replicate the support system (friends) at home, then you will feel a little bit more safer, as there is some normality in this new situation, join sports teams or societies, then you will be with people who share similar interests with you, UCLan has a mentoring scheme, check if your university has one, then apply to join it. Speaking to someone you don’t know is a lot easier than speaking to someone you do.
Just remember, loads of people feel like this, so it is completely normal.
Katy Nells xoxo