Social Distancing – Social Isolation
We are in new territory with the current pandemic. We have been told to social distance ourselves from family and friends, many people are working from home or working in a different way to keep away from coworkers. Sadly, many are finding themselves temporarily out of work. Although, given this health situation that may be safest for your health.
As an introvert, at first it was like “yes” this will be good, I like to be alone more than the average person. I crave being alone actually, if I don’t get enough alone time, I notice the difference in how I’m feeling. So, this must be great for someone like me, right?
We need to and must socially distance ourselves right now. We need to stay inside our homes, go out as little as possible especially to public places, wash our hands frequently. Grocery shopping is less frequent, its grab a cart, sanitize, shop away from people and get out as quickly as you can, sanitize again. Gone are the days of browsing and carefully picking your produce and groceries, its quick, calculated and finished. Most retailers are closed unless they are essential like the grocery stores, pharmacies, gas stations. We can’t eat in restaurants, it’s carry out only. I’m thankful that I have a home in which we can create good meals, the tools and knowledge to do so, not everyone is as fortunate.
But as this pandemic progresses, the freedom to be socially connected has shifted for obvious reasons. I found myself talking across the parking lot to my best friend, unable to give her the friendly hug and banter with each other like our usual practice. I find myself talking on the phone much more than usual just to have that connection. Yes, it’s taken many people back to the days of chatting on the phone for long periods of time which is great for the connection.
The other side to this is the incessant need to know what is going on. I find myself on social media more, checking and watching news more just to gain a glimmer of knowledge, anything that could make me feel better right now. But that constant checking and watching is also isolating us, we are so absorbed in the need for information that perhaps we are missing the connection of those in the same room or home as we are.
I’m worried for the future and changes that are coming to us as a society. I miss being in the presence of my yoga community and worry for our future and the changes that are sure to come. I worry for the changes and shifts that come from this invisible threat to our wellbeing, not just physically but the mental stress that has come with this. Will this make people cautious in the future to get physically close to those they don’t know or even those that they know for fear of sickness. Will people want to stay home and isolate themselves in the future. How will this change how we interact with each other socially
My brain is active with worry for so many reasons. The immediate worry of family and friends knowing that someone I know will get sick. The worry of will they survive if they do get Covid 19. The worry if I get sick, will I be okay, sounds selfish but it’s a real possibility for each and everyone of us, no one is immune. I’m not really sleeping; appetite isn’t that great but I’m eating. I have a constant nagging headache and feel physically tired but not from exertion. I have “found” time but can’t seem to allow myself to settle in and truly use it. I’m full of nervous anxious energy and trying to figure out a good way to use it. It’s tough, I know I’m not alone in many of these feelings, I'm truly trying to only distance myself rather than isolate as is my nature when I'm stressed and feeling depressed.
So, as we live through this time, are you social distancing or are you socially isolating yourself? Reach out to someone if you are isolating rather than just distancing yourself. Its okay to need help, its okay to reach out.