If there is one thing you hear when you turn on the news right now, it’s social distancing. As a direct means of fighting the coronavirus, it is important that we all do what we can to separate ourselves from each other and do what we can to slow the spread of the disease.
Humans are very social, and many of us rely on social contact. Combined with all of the other challenging changes we are having to go through such as the transition to online school, this is becoming a very hard time for all of us. But it is important to start taking a look forward and thinking about how this isolation can affect us.
Ms. Danelle Rivera, a psychology teacher and doctoral student, explains that social isolation can be very hard for many of us. Social interaction, especially for more extroverted types, is important for our well being and plays an important role in reinforcing good moods and keeping us happy. These aren’t the only issues though.
According to Ms. Brown, a counselor at EVHS, social distancing, “can trigger an already existing condition or feeling, it can disrupt mental health treatment and services, and it can affect our ability to socialize (socialization is important to overall wellness).”
Luckily, there are some things we can do to help alleviate some of the problems that come with this difficult time. Below, I have assembled a list of things you can and should do to keep you and the people close to you happy and safe.
Make a schedule, and stick to it!
It’s important to keep routine during this time. It is very easy to have a sporadic schedule and fall into a chaotic routine which is bad for your health. Try to sleep, and eat at the same times every day and make a schedule for doing your school work. This will help you try to keep some order to your life.
When creating your routine, do something to differentiate school. Something like dedicating a certain room in your house to school work, or a habitual action to let your brain know it is school time. Do something like dress up a little while you work on school or get a cup of coffee to start school time. And no matter what you do, never do your school work in bed!
Create a group chat with your friends. FaceTime them as much as possible. Do what you can to imitate hanging out with people, without actually doing it. Google Meets, Skype, and Snapchat are great platforms to keep yourself connected.
Try something new
When you are absolutely bored doing nothing, try something you have always wanted to try. Maybe learn to cook or play an instrument. I personally have been tearing apart old electronics and trying to make some stupid new toy and learn about electronics in the process. It doesn’t matter what you do, just keep yourself busy.
Get some exercise
Social distancing doesn’t mean staying inside. Get outside, and exercise. Anything will work, as long as you’re following the social distancing recommendations.
Be a good citizen
It’s hard for all of us to make changes to our lives. But the more people that follow these rules and practice good hygiene, the faster we can overcome the problems that we face. Wash your hands, don’t gather with people, and listen to the local authorities.
If you or someone you love is struggling during this tough time please contact: HOPE Center (970) 306-4673. For less urgent needs, school counseling is available, and you can reach out to anyone you trust