As a contractor or freelancer, it’s likely that you will spend a large portion of your time working alone. Though this provides you with a distraction-free working space to get to power ahead and get things done, it can also become lonely.

In light of last week's Mental Health Awareness Week, we at Nixon Williams wanted to put together a few easy ways to help you combat loneliness as a contractor.

Find a co-working space

We all need company from time to time. If you spend a lot of time in your home office, an easy way to get yourself out is by renting a co-working space. If you miss the buzz of office life, this will give you the opportunity to surround yourself with different people and can be a good way to change up your environment.

Sites like Office Genie and WeWork will give you a rundown of available workspaces based on your budget and location. If you’re unsure what you’re looking for, they can also provide a good starting point.

Connect with other contractors

Unless you’re self-employed, it’s hard to really understand the unique workings of contractors. Connecting with workers in likeminded situations can be a good way to share advice and insight.

IPSE, our partner and the UK’s largest governing body supporting contractors and freelancers run a number of networking events throughout the year. These events are a good chance to meet with other contractors and grow your network. You can find more about upcoming events on IPSE’s website.

Make the most of your off-time

If you work alone, it’s important that you do what you enjoy when you’re not working. One of the many benefits of contracting is the ability to work flexibly, so you should use this to your advantage. Make the time to spend with your loved ones and do the things you enjoy – though it may sound obvious it can make a big difference to your mood.

Don’t be afraid to ask for help

Feeling lonely from time to time is perfectly normal, and it’s ok to admit that your lifestyle is sometimes poorly equipped to deal.

Mind has put together a guide detailing how to be happier at work, who to reach out to if you need to and managing your stress at work. You can download your free copy here.