Staying Connected While Staying Apart
We probably don’t have to remind you that we are suddenly much more separated than we are used to being. While staying separated is the most important thing we can do for ourselves and one another at this time, connecting with others when we can is so beneficial to our well being. Here are a few ideas on how to get creative and stay connected with the ones we love.
The virtual dinner party
Using the help of software like Zoom, Google Hangouts, and Skype, plan a dinner party with a handful of your friends. It may not be the same as gathering in person, but there are certainly some perks: not as many dishes, you can cook on your own time, and you don’t have to kick people out of your house when it gets late! As an added wrinkle, try cooking all the same dish and see how it turns out. It may sound corny at first but seeing the faces of your friends and family can be more comforting than just hearing their voices on the phone.
“Attend” a virtual concert
While many of us have had to convert our kitchens and living rooms to home offices, musicians have been getting equally as creative—sometimes even converting their homes into makeshift recording studios and concert venues. Since nationwide tours have been cancelled, musicians are looking for new ways to keep busy and give their fans some new material. Go check out your favorite artists’ social media pages to see if they have any live streaming events coming up.
Now is as good a time as any to invite your friends to play games with you over the internet. There are free versions of Scrabble (Words With Friends), Risk, chess, and others available in the App Store or the Google Play store. Embrace that competitive spirit!
Write a Letter
A lot of these ideas involve increasing screen-time, so consider this a good analog alternative. Everyone likes to feel like someone is thinking of them, and what a better way to show someone you care than hand-writing a personal letter. It may not seem like much, but you could make someone feel connected in these isolating times.
Start a Virtual Book Club
Using video-calling apps mentioned above, get a few of your more bookish friends (or challenge some of your not-so-bookish friends) to pick a book to read together. Like writing a letter, reading a book can provide a much-needed break from staring into a screen. Not only do you get the social benefits of chatting with some friends once a week, but you may end up reading a book you would not have otherwise. A win-win!
Since a lot of us are working from home, we are bound to get tired of our personal library of music. Find a friend (or group of friends) and set up a playlist exchange. Maybe a friend will end up putting your next favorite song on it! If you are a regular reader of this blog, you know we love making playlists. Keep an eye out for a Lostine “Work From Home” playlist in the next few weeks!
This is what we came up with, tell us what you are doing to stay connected in the comments!