We’re hyper connected these days. Technology brings our words closer and makes it easier to stay connected to what’s happening in the lives of the people we know BUT we seem to be less involved in those happenings. When our words are connected by not our voices and body language, we miss out on huge chunks of information.
Which feels better? Reading the word HUGS or having your friend wrap their arms around you in a hug?
Simple ways to escape isolation:
Make a phone call. It’s not as good as actually seeing someone is person but at least you get to hear their voice and they get to hear yours.
Get to know your neighbors. We’re all so busy with schedules and work and a million other things that we often don’t even have a clue who our neighbors are. Changing that can be as simple as walking over and saying hello or you could even host a neighborhood party.
Share a ride. No, it’s probably not safe to pick up hitchhiker’s these days, but you could offer to ride to the store with your neighbor or take turns driving to the office with a coworker.
Have a meal together. Everyone needs to eat at some point in their day. Even if you just sit together over a bagged lunch, you can still take turns talking while the other person is chewing.
Go all out, plan a get together with a group of friends! This doesn’t have to be anything extravagant if you don’t want it to be. Getting together at a local pizza shop can be just as exciting and fun as doing some fancy party.
Most importantly – Focus on the person / people you are with! Turn off your phone or at least stick it in your pocket and do whatever it takes to ignore it for the time you’re together. Whatever you’re doing with them, give them and yourself the gift of being fully present. I love the suggestion of putting everyone’s phone in a stack during dinner and the first person to pick up their phone gets to pay for the whole group. If everyone manages to ignore their phones then the tab is split.
Returning to the world of real, live human interaction gives you a break from the isolation while it deepens your relationships. You can also then be part of that online world update and make the people who are reading it wish they were there too.
Don’t be the person who is always reading about everyone else’s fun!
Isolation isn’t good for humans. We’re genetically programmed to want to interact with others. When 2 or more people get together, the ideas that are shared blossom so much faster and easier than communications in writing.
Set yourself the goal of having at least one in person interaction with someone you care about each week. Your co-workers may or may not count depending on whether or not you have real life conversations and share ideas.
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