Humans Are Social Beings: How Social Distancing Burdens the Soul
The global pandemic brought many changes to everyday life. For instance, people were asked to stay away from each other to slow the spread of the virus. However, this directly contradicts what people have always done. They turn to others in times of stress, talk, listen, hug, and more. Connections become of great importance during difficult times, and these connections were yanked away.
However, the virus continues to be seen in cities across the country. Although vaccines are now offered, time is needed to get to herd immunity. What can individuals do until the country reaches this critical stage? Why are social connections of such importance?
Humans are Social Creatures
Humans, when they are stressed or ill, need others around them. Research shows loneliness leads to an increase in cortisol, which serves as an indicator of stress. The body cannot fight off pathogens as easily when the person is isolated, and premature death becomes of concern. These serve as only three negative effects seen with social isolation, and there are many others. Anyone who is depressed or having suicidal thoughts needs to seek help immediately. If you are interested in psychotherapy to help you get through this difficult time, don’t hesitate to find a therapist today. Your life may depend on it.
Find News Ways to Connect
Technology continues to increase in importance thanks to the global pandemic. Men and women find they can video chat with loved ones to stay in touch or connect over text and phone calls. Use these interactions to share thoughts and feelings related to the lockdown and lack of social interaction. Doing so can help to relieve feelings of stress and isolation.
If someone is ill with Covid, they cannot come into contact with individuals who aren’t ill. Fortunately, they can still make connections at this difficult time. Therapy dogs work with Covid patients, so consider scheduling time with one of these animals. The World Health Organization has deemed this type of interaction safe.
Tips for Coping
Connect with anyone you can. Don’t limit interactions to those you are close to. Now is the time to expand your circle and make new connections. Speak with the neighbor you never actually met. Ask if they need anything as you head to the grocery store or offer to mow their grass if they come down with the virus. When people help each other, they feel better about themselves.
If you do feel overwhelmed, take a deep breath and relax. Doing so slows your mind and allows you to get back on track. Everyone is going through this together, so don’t hesitate to reach out to someone if you find you need extra help. People must band together at this time and work to restore normalcy to everyday life.
Nobody can say when this pandemic will end. Case numbers ebb and flow, although this depends in part on the area of the country. If lockdowns become necessary again, the feelings of isolation that accompany social distancing may return.
If you find yourself sinking into depression, reach out for help. There is no need to go through this alone, and you won’t be judged for struggling during this difficult time. America can and will make it through the pandemic. It’s just a matter of sticking together and helping others, even if it is from a distance. The day will come when people can hug again, and that day can’t come soon enough. It will be a time for celebration with everyone joining in.