We, Humans, are social beings. We are built to interact with others.
As Maya Angelou wrote:
Alone, all alone
Nobody, but nobody
Can make it out here alone.
This past year, our ability to socialize, interact with peers, coworkers, store clerks, friends, and even family has been severely restricted, maybe for a while.
I think most everyone already knows how to adjust. Here are some reminders:
- Social media can be wonderful. For some people, that is the highlight of their day – possibly their lifeline. Even good things, however, require some moderation.
- Don’t be afraid to give others a call. Do it regularly. If they are busy, they can tell you. Or likely, they need to talk as much as you do.
- Spend time talking with those you live with. There is so much routine involved in living in the same house that this is easy to overlook.
- Reach out to colleagues. We have to be mindful of work/personal boundaries, but there may be those whom we have talked with on a regular basis for years. Say Hi.
- Same thing for neighbors. Check to see how they are doing, and if you can help. This is especially important if they are elderly, alone, or ill.
- Weather and circumstances permitting, look for opportunities for safe gatherings. This may be a socially distanced backyard bonfire. Keep your mask handy and stick to your own food. Be creative.
- Hugs are healthy. If you figure out how to do it safely let me know. Maybe a sheet of plastic wrap? Wear a hooded coat backward?
- This sounds backward, but we each have different quotas of need for time alone. So do your spouse and your kids.
- Ironically, spending 24/7 with your spouse may highlight differences not apparent with limited time together. Address these, be patient and forgiving and ask for the same.
Avoid Truly Toxic People. If you can’t change them, beat them or accommodate them, then all you can do is to try to keep your distance.