How you can stay connected while social distancing

Social distancing and quarantine is a dream come true for introverts and those who enjoy going to work in their pajamas. But for others, this isolation is a nightmare. Moving back home or staying in a cramped apartment for days and possibly weeks on end can cause negative effects. 

But as people socially distance in 2020, ironically we’re equipped with so many ways to remain connected to those outside of our homes or apartments.

With Facetime, Zoom and Liberty students’ new best friend, Microsoft Teams, having conversation face-to-face is still completely possible. Each application has a unique set of tools that individuals can utilize, whether you’re connecting in your class or chatting with your best friend.

While staying connected is important, unplugging can be equally important in this time. News is constantly circulating with information regarding the ever-present coronavirus, most of it wildly discouraging.

Taking in a healthy amount of news is important, so know enough to stay updated, but don’t update Twitter every five minutes. Taking in an excessive amount of discouraging news can make social distancing much harder.

There’s also other ways to stay connected with those around you without breaking the “six-foot rule.” 

Many friends have met in parking lots, staying in their cars and connecting across a parking spot. Meeting with your neighbor from across the lawn, or going old school with a letter or package to a friend are other ways to keep in contact with your people.

While staying in, streaming services like Netflix and Amazon have been a saving grace for so many households. A Chrome extension called “Netflix Party” allows friends all over the world to watch a movie together and comment on it while they watch.

Instagram threads have also become increasingly popular, encouraging people to share about themselves or to post something goofy in order to share a smile in such a strange time. People have also used Instagram Live to read stories to children or to simply goof around on the app for a time.

Social media Bible studies have also hit photo-sharing platforms, encouraging others to lean into their faith together in a less traditional format. This comes after churches have been forced to start livestreaming their services rather than meet each Sunday.

Skyler Franzen, a resident shepherd on the Hill, has worked with her team to connect with their hall spiritually from all over the world. Using the YouVersion Bible app, they have created a plan that allows each person to read the scripture for the day and then comment what they thought of the passage.

“We’re hoping to continue to encourage girls to seek the Lord first,” Franzen said. “Especially during this crazy time.”

Though the outside world is daunting, staying creative and remaining connected in social distancing will be crucial for making it through this time. 

Though it may take an extra bit of effort, this connection will encourage others to keep building relationships in these unique circumstances.

Graves is the assistant feature editor. Follow her on Twitter.

One comment

  • As someone who’s relatively introverted, social distancing isn’t as much of a challenge for me as it may be for others. However, it’s good that technology exists that keeps us connected, no matter how far apart. Apps like Zoom have become especially popular of late, I’ve noticed, and these are just the start.

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