Many people are struggling with isolation and boredom during the COVID-19 pandemic. Given these circumstances, some people may fall into symptoms of loneliness and depression. Those who have dealt with mental illness or past addictions may fear relapse or a return of symptoms. These challenging times have required people to play their part by social distancing, but this can affect other areas of our lives as well. Below are some tips to address isolation and boredom based on your specific isolation situation.
Isolated with Your Family
Have each family member create surprise activities for the day. This could build anticipation and create an element of surprise. For example, you can explore different recipes and create menus for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Assign each member a part in contributing to the meal. For fun, have a Netflix or Amazon Prime movie night or a game night where the entire family participates. If there are family members outside of the house, they can also join in via zoom. Each household is different, but everyone can chip in on the fun.
Isolated with Your Significant Other
Date nights do not have to end with social distancing. If you’re facing boredom, you or your significant other can create a date night filled with activities you can do at home or within the parameters of social distancing. For instance, you can create a romantic candlelight experience with your significant other in a warm and cozy area of your home or have a nice picnic on a warm and sunny day outside on your lawn. You could also order your favorite takeout or to-go meal and enjoy it together. If you want to change it up, you can also have a zoom couples’ night with close friends that are couples. Taboo, murder mystery games, and karaoke are some great examples of group activities or games that can be enjoyed from a distance. These can create a fun experience that’s good for the spirit.
Isolated by Yourself
There are a couple of things you can do when feeling lonely or alone during this time. One great thing to do is initiate and organize family and friends group video chat sessions, because it’s important to stay connected. You can also look into free virtual resources that allow you to enjoy courses, classes, conferences, workshops, and events in a group setting. If virtual activities aren’t your thing, you could read a new book, develop new skills, or catch up on your favorite shows. For the new year, you can use this time as a space for reflection. Try creating of a vision board for the upcoming months. Reinvesting in yourself or exploring new self-care practices is never a waste of time.
Overall, if you find that these times are overwhelming and new activities are not enough to combat the emotional, mental, and psychological effects of isolation and COVID-19, it is best to reach out to a mental health provider for guidance. You and your provider can create a plan to address your concerns. This may include you continuing therapy or even starting medication management. Regardless of the circumstance, therapists are available to help you and hear your concerns. Feel free to share them with your friends and family. Stay blessed.