Depending on where we live in the world right now impacts what point we are at with this pandemic. I am in Southern California and I can say that things are just beginning to get heated up here. The Governor has just put out a self-isolation order to those people over the age of 65, all bars are ordered to be shut down and I can only surmise that more stringent restraints are to come. For myself, I am doing what I can to take care of myself and avoid large crowds as of right now. If and when it is deemed necessary to isolate or even quarantine, I will comply willingly. I am prepared, at least as far as my food supplies and other provisions. But what about our mental and emotional preparation?
As humans, we are a social species. Yes, we do need times of solitude, some of us more than others, although social interaction and connection with other people is essential for our emotional health. So how do we get this as we move into isolation, especially for those of us who may live alone?
Of course, we have these handy dandy devices right in our hands which allows us to connect instantly with all of our friends and family across the globe. This is so much more essential than we may even realize. Most of us over a certain age can reflect and contemplate what it would have been like 30 years ago when all we had was the telephone. That would have been a much deeper sense of isolation, but even so, our devices and screen time can only manufacture so much connection.
The social gatherings, happy hours, dinner meetings, or Friday nights out just letting loose after a stressful week. Those are all gone for some people across the world right now, and for some of us this may still come. Those fun social times are important for many to help with reducing stress and connecting with others on a deeper level.
For me, knowing that all this is temporary is a big help. Using this time to build on personal tasks that may help me, like working harder on my business, getting caught up on good books, doing yoga in my living room to a YouTube video, or taking online courses will help not only fill the time and the void, but actually help with personal growth. This is a time to grow, change, stretch ourselves in ways we haven’t before, and ultimately show ourselves that we can rise above.
Isolation can be very hard, especially for those who may not be as tech savvy, or even those people who have less contacts in their phones, but relied on getting out for their connections with others. I say we have to remember that there are other people out there, those you may not see on social media, who may be lonely. Reach out to them. This can help you feel connected and will surely put a smile on their face. Think about the things that help you out most when loneliness kicks in. Exercise is important. Anything that can get the blood pumping for a good 20 minutes. Dive into something creative. Indulge yourself in some of those things that you love.
What are some of the things that help you when feeling lonely or when you’re isolated? How do you cope with a lack of social or physical connection?