We are social creatures. So it's no surprise that quarantine fatigue has begun to set in.
"Humans are wired to come together physically," says psychologist Judith Moskowitz of Northwestern University. But, loneliness has become widespread in modern life. And, social distancing has just exacerbated the problem," Moskowitz says.
Finding ways to connect is essential to our well-being, since prolonged isolation can increase the risk of depression and anxiety, says Dr. Sandro Galea of Boston University's School of Public Health. "We know from other events, the longer the isolation, the more risk," Galea says.
Social distancing recommendations will remain in place for months to come, and until there's a vaccine, limits on big gatherings will likely continue. For the elderly or those who live alone, the isolation can be particularly grueling. But, people are finding new ways to interact with each other, even under extraordinary circumstances. Here are some strategies to connect with others.
Note: If you're feeling persistent sadness or anxiety that interferes with day-to-day life, consider seeing a therapist (which you can do online, too).
1. Don't scroll, but do connect online, with real-time activities
When it comes to our emotional health, social media platforms can be a double-edged sword. Simply scrolling through a Facebook, TikTok or Instagram feed may not help you connect with other people in a meaningful way.