There’s a term going around a lot lately, thanks to COVID-19: social distancing. As we all know, distancing from others is one of the best ways to prevent the virus from spreading.

It’s about keeping physically distant, but there’s a mental and social aspect too.

You can’t see your friends or extended family anymore. You’re spending more time alone, or just with your family, than you ever have before.

If you’re used to working outside the home every day, the isolation can be frustrating. And if you’ve been mentally unwell, this period is especially taxing. 

Connecting with other people is an important aspect of healing.

Our relationships with loved ones help us flourish and give our lives purpose. If you isolate yourself, being alone with your thoughts can cause you to spiral. So what’s a guy to do when he has to socially distance now?

Here are some ways to cope with the isolation:

  • Chat virtually with friends. Seeing their faces flat on a screen can be disheartening, but it’s better than no connection at all. Talking and hearing their voices can be uplifting.
  • Spend time with family. Being with your family 24/7 can be overwhelming. But it can also give you a sense of normalcy and stability.
  • Do something you love. Whether it’s getting active, doing something creative, or watching your favorite TV show, you’ll feel more like yourself. 
  • Be easy on yourself. This is a hard time for everyone. 

Psychology Today also has tips for coping, as well as warnings about the mental dangers of isolating.

How are you handling social distancing? What can you do to make it easier on yourself?

By Courtland McPherson, MSW, LCSW (Regular Guest Blogger)