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Community and mental health services for Southampton, Portsmouth and parts of Hampshire and the Isle of Wight.


Have a little Hygge in your life

Jas Sohal, Acting Chief People Officer for Solent NHS Trust

Jas Sohal, Acting Chief People Officer for Solent NHS Trust

Hi, I’m Jas Sohal, Acting Chief People Officer for Solent NHS Trust.

There’s no denying that Covid-19 has heightened feelings of anxiety and worry because of the uncertainty out there.

And it’s important to acknowledge that those feelings aren’t going away any time soon, and they can have negative effects on our mental health.

Published in The Lancet Psychiatry in July 2020, a new study from the University of Manchester and others, suggests a decline in population mental health from before the pandemic into the lockdown period in April 2020.

Findings included:

  • Some mental health inequalities that were present before the pandemic have widened. The increase in mental distress was greater among women than men; and in younger age groups than older people.
  • New mental health inequalities after one month of lockdown, with people living with young children showing greater increases in mental distress than people from child-free homes.

Autumn officially started on 22 September, with the clocks going back on 25 October a clear marker of those changes. With shorter days ahead, I’d like to share some tips to boost our mental health and wellbeing, based on the idea of Hygge – the Danish word, pronounced "hoo-ga", and usually translated into English as "cosiness".

Take time to relax

Hygge is about being comfortable and looking after yourself at home. That may be enjoying a hot drink and a warm blanket, or diving into a TV show or book. However you choose to unwind, enjoy that quality time indoors.

Connect with your community

It’s a good time to make sure that the time we spend online is meaningful. Many of us are calling our friends and family through video apps – let’s continue that to stay connected. Perhaps even reach out to those you’ve not spoken to in a while. You might even feel ready to see what volunteering opportunities there are in your neighbourhood.

Ready, steady, cook

Nutrition is key to how well we feel and how we go about our daily lives – physically, mentally and emotionally. Autumn is the ideal time to try out some heartwarming and healthy dishes such as soups, stews and casseroles packed full of vitamins and minerals.

Explore the great outdoors

We’re really lucky to have amazing coastal, city and rural spots on our doorstep. Being able to explore the great outdoors and take in the fresh air and scenery can help improve our mental health and wellbeing, and boost our physical activity. Our partners at Solent Mind have explored this important connection further.  

Start some Hygge ways today

Hopefully you’re able to take a few of these tips into your daily life, and they will be a help in strengthening your overall health and wellbeing. Let’s all have a little Hygge in our lives.

Coming up…

We are planning some interactive hygge related sessions for everyone to enjoy and participate in. Details to follow shortly.

Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS)

Please visit our services page for specific services and contact details. Alternatively, contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service by emailing or calling the number below. You can also give us feedback, make a complaint or share a compliment.

0800 013 2319

*Lines are open Monday to Friday 10am – 4pm.

The Freedom of Information (FOI) Act was passed on 30 November 2000. It gives a general right of access to all types of recorded information held by public authorities, with full access granted in January 2005.

The Act sets out exemptions to that right and places certain obligations on public authorities.


Phone: 0300 123 3919

*Subject to any exemptions which apply, we are obliged to provide the information requested please note that requests for Personal Information is not covered under this Act and should be applied for through the Data Protection Act 1998.

Our administrative and managerial centre is based in Southampton.

While our services can be found around various NHS locations in Southampton and Portsmouth (and surrounding districts), our administrative and managerial centre is based in Southampton at:

Highpoint Venue
Bursledon Road
SO19 8BR

If you require a printable version of how to find us including bus times, car access and bike info please download our leaflet. (Copyright of Highpoint Venue).

Central office phone: 0300 123 3390

*Lines open Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm.

If you are a journalist with a media enquiry, please contact the Communications Team at:

0300 123 4156 or 02381 031076

The Communications Office is open Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm.