Many of us (myself included) are finding the social distancing mandate to be very challenging. A virtual hug is nice, but… The news is full of scary statistics and uncertainty, so here at The Lounge, I’m going to stay true to my original mission, “tips and tools for the business of motherhood,” and try to bring some light to your world and some ways to thrive in our new normal. Today, I’m going to share some ideas on how to thrive and connect despite social distancing.
- Connect Virtually by Video. I have been wanting to learn how to set up Zoom sessions, and this was my chance. Beyond using it for online business stuff, I’ve been able to connect with groups of friends. Sure, the conversation naturally starts with discussion about what has changed in our personal and professional lives. The OMG moments none of us could have predicted even a week ago. But…I need to pivot to the silver linings, the happy stuff that has come out of this very dark cloud hovering over us. My adult kids are all home; we’re so lucky to have food to eat, rooms to enjoy, WiFi to stay connected; we’re taking more walks outside; our dogs are getting more exercise. Find your silver linings, and talk about them! (BTW, Zoom is offering its video conferencing platform FREE to K-12 via schools here. Anyone can get a free account and talk for up to 40 minutes, but students, free and unlimited. Check it out).
- CALL Seniors. Our older relatives who may not be as proficient with their phones or computers need our love now more than ever. An old fashioned phone call 🙂 goes a really long way to someone living in a senior housing community where they’ve all been asked to stay in their rooms and have meals delivered to their door. How isolating is that? My son called our Great/Great Great Uncle the other day, and we passed the phone around so each of us could catch up. I was the last to talk, and as I was hanging up with a smile on my face, full with happiness from having connected with my Great Uncle Sam (he’s REALLY great, I assure you!), I noticed the phone timer – 2 1/2 hours. What a gift! To him AND to us 🙂
- Connect with Knowledge and Inspiration. If you find yourselves with some extra time on your hands, and you’ve exhausted Netflix & Hulu, learn something new! I was thrilled to learn that many Ivy League colleges are offering online courses for FREE! Guess what? You just got into Harvard, Yale & Princeton tuition free. What a GIFT! Also, Coursera has a library of classes you can take at no charge.
- Plan a Virtual Event. Whether you use FaceTime or Zoom, pick a theme, invite family or friends, and connect! Charades, trivia, jokes, happy hour, exercise – many things you can do in person can also be enabled by technology.
- Grab Your Vitamin D for Free Daily. Get outside! At least ONCE a day for 15 minutes, longer if you can. It’s good for the body, mind, soul! We’ve been walking our dogs, keeping our distance from others outside to be safe, and it’s a win-win-win – for us, for our dogs, and for our Vitamin D which is best absorbed through natural sunlight.
- Spread positivity. Everyone is stressed and anxious right now. It takes a lot of energy to stay optimistic at a time like this, but think about how YOU feel when someone throws you a compliment or makes you feel happy and good? Spread THAT! Find ways to promote happiness at a time when we all need a whole lot of it!
I sincerely hope this chapter in our lives is in our rear view mirrors as soon as possible, but in the meantime, I’m going to continue to look for ways to connect. What ideas can you add to my list? Add a comment to this post!