This pandemic has impacted everyone in unique ways. One impact that we all can feel is the distance from others. Being socially isolated from your friends and loved ones is beyond difficult, especially when you’re coping with all the other changes the pandemic has brought us. Social connection is not only something that makes you happy, it has been found that humans need it to survive! Research shows that people who take part in meaningful, productive, and social activities generally live longer, have a sense of purpose, and maintain a better mood (Lhussier, Dalkin, & Hetherington, 2019). So, while this pandemic has kept us apart, it is critical that we find ways to get together. Here are a few ways to stay socially connected while we need to stay physically distanced.
Make a Phone Call.
Never underestimate the power of a short phone call. Reach out to your family, friends, and coworkers just to check in on them. Being distant shows us how important those small social interactions we used to have regularly are to us. Your phone call may make someone’s day.
You can now connect face to face on so many applications using your phone, computer, or tablet.
You can also invite loved ones to join interactive online discussion groups about topics or things you like (Book Clubs, Favorite TV Show, Recipe Sharing Club, Funny Cat Videos).
Have a movie night using “Teleparty” (netflixparty.com) from Netflix. It allows you to watch Netflix movies and shows with your family and friends from separate homes and devices.
Invite friends to play games together online. You can play live, chat and compare scores.
You can even exercise together, separately. There are many applications (such as step counters) that let you challenge and track your friend’s exercise progress.
Socially Distant In-Person Activities.
Set up a lawn chair in your driveway or in front of your home. You can wave to neighbors and see what is happening in your neighborhood.
Check on a neighbor from at least 6 feet away. Connect over the fence or across the yard. You can even wear masks to keep everyone safe.
Go to a park or dog park. You can sit distanced from others or take a walk. Remember to stay at least 6 feet away and wear your mask!
We are all going through a rough time, so let’s do it together! Support each other and we will get through this!
Lhussier, M., Dalkin, S., & Hetherington, R. (2019). Community care for severely frail older people: Developing explanations of how, why and for whom it works. International Journal of Older People Nursing, 14(1), e12217. https://doi.org/10.1111/opn.12217