How to Cope With Loneliness and Social Isolation in a Covid World
Today, it’s challenging to have a great social life.
This was true even before Covid-19 became an issue. We are all different and are responding differently to the current situation. In the not-so-distant past, some people believed that it was boring to stay at home during the evenings and the weekends and looked for an excuse to get out of the house. But now, between streaming services, the internet, smartphones, and video games, it’s much easier to find an excuse to stay home.
Covid-19 has only made the situation even more challenging. Now, there is a legitimate reason to avoid others. 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.
Luckily, there are still things you can do to help maintain your emotional health, even when your time with others is reduced.
Learn how to ease the discomfort of social isolation with these tips:
1. Be Productive
Just because you might be spending a lot of time alone doesn’t mean you just have to sit there and be miserable. Everyone feels better when they’re being productive. Some productive activities could include:
● Paint the living room
● Volunteer to help others (within current regulations)
● Take an online class
● Rearrange the cupboards
● Read a book (or even join an online book club)
● Take the dog for a walk.
2. Connect with others in a safe manner
Use your imagination and find a way to connect with people while making your health a priority.
● Use Skype, Zoom, Whatsapp or other options for talking “face-to-face”
● Chat online via forums and pages
● Walk outside in the fresh air and have a conversation with a friend (if your current restrictions allow)
3. 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 great.
● Look at old photographs
● Go to a museum if your tier allows or look at a gallery online
● Find the most perfect tree in the park and really look at it
4. Take up a solo hobby
There are plenty of hobbies you can do by yourself. Paint, play chess online, puzzles, crafts, walk, knit, write, or train your dog. A hobby is something you choose to do because it brings you pleasure.
5. Maintain a high level of self-care
Loneliness and social isolation often lead to poor self-care. It’s important to continue taking good care of yourself even if you’re spending a lot of time alone. For example, a shower or blow drying your hair isn’t something that you do just for others. It’s also something that you do for yourself.
6. 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 do you want to experiment with?
Changing your perception
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 easier to connect with others even if physical proximity is impossible.
Feeling productive can ease the pain of being alone. Instead of focusing on this great challenge, 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.
Current events mean that there is a lot that we cannot control. However, what we can control is our response to these events. Hopefully these tips give you a few ideas of ways you can respond that can benefit your emotional state and mindset.