Today, it’s challenging to have a great social life. This was true even before this latest coronavirus became an issue.
In the not-so-distant past, it used to be so boring to stay at home during the evenings and weekends that people were always looking for an excuse to get out of the house. But in today’s world, between streaming services, the internet, smartphones, and video games, it’s much easier to find an excuse to stay home. The coronavirus has only made the situation even more challenging. While a few select people seem to thrive with very little human contact, most people need to spend time with others to stay emotionally healthy and happy. Fortunately, there are still things you can do to help maintain your emotional health, even when your time with others is reduced.
Here are some tips to help ease the discomfort of social isolation:
- Be productive. Just because you might be spending a lot of time alone doesn’t mean you have to sit around feeling miserable. Everyone feels better when they are doing something productive. Here are some activities to consider:
- Paint a room(s) in your house or apartment.
- Take a class online.
- Rearrange the pantry and/or closets.
- Start an online business.
- Get into a healthy exercise routine at home.
- Adopt a pet.
- Get creative in connecting with others. Use your imagination and find a way to connect with people.
- Use Skye, Zoom, and other options for talking “face-to-face.”
- Chat online via forums.
- Sit outside on your porch or deck, in the fresh air, and have a conversation with a friend or family member.
- View beautiful things. What makes something beautiful? It makes you feel a certain way when you look at it. With your smartphone or computer, you can view just about anything in the world. Spend some time looking at beautiful things each day and you’ll feel better.
- Take up a solo hobby. There are plenty of hobbies you can do by yourself. Paint, play chess online, hike, knit, write, or read a trilogy. Choose two activities that you know will bring you pleasure.
- Get a pet. If you don’t have a pet, consider getting one. Pets provide wonderful companionship, and they love you unconditionally. They will also give you something else to take care of and think about. What type of animal interests you?
- Maintain a high level of self-care. Loneliness and social isolation often lead to poor self-care. It’s important to continue to take good care of yourself even if you’re spending a lot of time alone. For example, get into a morning regimen as if you’re going out for the day, eat a healthy breakfast, and plan nutritious meals throughout the day. Also, don’t forget to take time for exercise and journaling since both are a great way to deal with stress and help keep your mindset focused on the positive.
- Be creative. Most people find they are more creative when they have time to themselves. Now is an ideal time to take advantage of your solitude. Let your creative juices flow!
- What ideas do you have?
- What do you want to create?
- What have you been thinking about trying, but could never find the time?
Having a lot of free time alone doesn’t have to be a bad thing. There is a lot you can do to ease the discomfort of loneliness and social isolation. Technology makes it relatively easy to connect with others even if physical proximity is impossible. Feeling productive can also ease the pain of being alone. So, instead of focusing on the challenge of being alone, try to take advantage of its unique possibilities. You can learn more about yourself and try out a few hobbies, you’re free to explore your interests without interference from others. Just think – by developing other interests, when the time comes when you can reconnect socially, you’ll have a variety of new things to talk about.