At least it shouldn’t. I daresay the technology our culture is absurdly blessed with was made for these very strange times, where we’re forced to live life from our living room couches and in person contact with others is vastly limited.
I really worry about what the long term societal effects of such isolation will be, especially with already vulnerable people like seniors and those dealing with existing mental health issues. We were made to be social creatures, in fact the very act of conversing with someone stretches the mind and increases the feel good chemicals dopamine and oxytocin.
Without human interaction the brain becomes stagnant and a person’s world can shrink down to just their own problems and issues. It’s a really stifling way to live.
Reaching out to others really takes minimal effort. Here are just a few ways:
- Texting is ok but pick up the phone and call people too, especially those you wouldn’t normally.
- Use a video calling app like FaceTime, Skype or Zoom. It can be awkward at first but seeing people is a big mood booster. If my 83 year old mom can be taught how to use “The FaceTime”, anyone can!
- Drop flowers off for someone who could use a lift.
- Leave a note with your phone # for a vulnerable person in your neighborhood who you think may need help.
- Make eye contact and say hi to people when you’re out doing your socially distant appropriate exercise.
- Make a point of starting up conversations while waiting in line to buy toilet paper.
This post is really written more for myself than anyone else. At times I’ve let the Coronavirus take up so much mental space in my head, that I’m forgetting about the very real people around me who are suffering.
What are some other ways we can connect with others? Please share if you have ideas.