Lonely in the Time of Coronavirus? These Ideas Might Help.
This is an unprecedented time. With the spread of COVID-19 — the new viral strain in the coronavirus family that affects the lungs and respiratory system — we’re all unsure of what will happen next. However, what’s become clear is that we all need to be practicing social distancing to decrease the exponential spread of this virus and flatten the exponential curve.
Even if you aren’t high risk, you likely know someone who is, and it’s hard to know for sure when you have the virus — it can take about a week before an infected person starts to experience symptoms. As much as possible, everyone needs to be staying home.
But what about when the loneliness starts to take over? How can we stay connected when we’re all by ourselves? This is difficult for everyone, especially for some with mental health challenges (though it could also be ideal for others!) or if you are a single person living alone. Here are some ideas to make it through the next few weeks as we all keep to ourselves.
1. Connect with your loved ones on the phone.
Talk on the phone or have a video chat with a friend or family member. Most chat platforms now allow group chat for free.
2. Play a board game over video chat.
Imaginiff is a good group game that only one person has to have, same with Scattegories or trivia, which could accommodate two or more players. Utilizing an online platform like Board Game Arena is another idea as well. Share other game ideas in the comments!
3. Make art and share it online.
The Antisocial Art Show, started by the artistic director of Airigami, Kelly Cheatle, is helping people share the art they’re working on online, no matter what it is or how good it is! You can use the hashtag #antisocialartshow to get your work featured.
For anyone who needs daily motivation, art blog The Jealous Curator started a 30-day art challenge for artists who want to try and create something every day.
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#covid19 cancelled your plans for the weekend? Let’s stay in and make stuff together (but separately) HOW TO: just snap a pic of your project, (it’s not about perfection, it’s about protection, self-isolation can help slow down the spread of #covid19, so bonus) and post it to instagram with the hashtag #antisocialartshow It can be #drawings, #paintings, a clip of you playing an #instrument, a #poem maybe a favorite #recipe or a #gardening or #woodworking project only rule is, you’ve got to use supplies and tools you have on hand. #bekind #washyourhands (btw, if you make something that’s 6”x6” you can snailmail it to @roco137 for their annual fundraiser)
4. Give your neighbor a postcard.
From the same people bringing you the Antisocial Art Show, these printable postcards can help you offer support to anyone in your neighborhood who might need it. Download them here.
5. Watch a show “together.”
Streaming tools like TwoSeven allow you to watch videos with loved ones — even when you’re not in the same room. With automatic synchronization, live-chat and video cams, it’s a fun way to connect with others while you binge shows.
6. Host a virtual book club with a video chatting platform.
It’s a great time to catch up on your reading. And yes, the Quarantine Book Club is a thing.
7. Have a virtual dance party!
You, some loved ones, a video chat platform and a Spotify playlist is all you need. Plus, you can join the doctors who are doing the “coronavirus dance challenge” to keep their patients’ spirits lifted!
8. Register for an upcoming webinar or virtual conference.
Pick a topic you’re interested in and search Google or social media to find something that intrigues you. You can can also check out this page to see events hosted by The Mighty.
10. Game with others — or by yourself.
Are you into gaming but not usually a group gamer? Check out Steam to see if there are any free or inexpensive games you might like. The revival of Runescape has cultivated community for thousands around the world, for example.
11. Utilize social media.
Social media can be a great way to connect with others — but remember to give yourself breaks and try not to get overwhelmed by the updates.
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Hey, friend. ❤️ Sending you this little letter from @secondsapart to remind you that this Mighty community is here for you whenever you need us. ••• “Send this to someone to needs to hear it – do you feel alone currently?” ••• ????P.S. If you ever need some extra support, you’re always welcome to #CheckInWithMe on The Mighty. ••• #MightyTogether #quote #QOOTD #mentalhealth #mentalhealthsupport #mentalhealthjourney #chronicillness #spoonie #spooniecommunity #strongertogether #leanonme #chronicallyill #raredisease #disability #chronicillnesswarrior #mentalhealthwarrior #healthadvocacy #chronicfatigue #disability #themightysite #mentalhealthday #hereforyou
12. Sit on your porch and talk to neighbors who are also outside.
It’s OK to spend time outside. If you have a porch, maybe chat with someone you don’t normally chat with — from a safe six-foot distance.
13. Check out long distance relationship and mental health groups.
This Reddit page office advice and insights for people in long distance relationships — and it could help you out here. And of course, visit The Mighty for more ideas, since many folks have to practice social distancing on the regular.
Do you have any other ideas? Share as a comment or a Thought!
Concerned about coronavirus? Stay safe using the tips from these articles:
Getty image via nadia_bormotova