By Dr. Patrick Jean-Pierre MD
Why is communication important now more than ever? As a global community, we’re collectively experiencing something enormous and overwhelming for the first time. The COVID-19 pandemic has had us participating in aggressive social distancing, and it’s beginning to take its toll. If you’ve been feeling stressed, anxious, and lonely in recent weeks, you’re far from alone. It’s no easy thing to (temporarily) swear off seeing your family, friends, and maybe even your partner. And if you’re working from home for the first time, finding that work-life balance is more of a challenge than ever. Are you also trying to keep up with your work while homeschooling your kids? That’s even more on your plate. So what else can you possibly fit into your (completely upended) schedule right now?
Let’s check out why it matters to be in touch with your loved ones during this unprecedented and seemingly endless period. First, if there’s someone you’re especially worried about, like an elderly relative, regular check-ins can help put your mind at ease. Some days, you may only have time to exchange a quick text or two, and that’s okay. You’ll sleep better at night knowing that your loved one is safe and well. These days, that’s no small thing.
During social distancing, the benefits of regular communication with friends and family are enormous. These are strange times, and you’ve probably been feeling some uncertainty and sadness in the last few weeks. Fortunately, chatting with your favorite people can help manage stress levels and beat boredom—both yours and theirs. It will also keep everyone involved from feeling quite so isolated and depressed. Taking good care of your mental health during the pandemic is a must, and you can do it together. You might even find that you get to know the people you love on a deeper level than ever before.
It’s also important to stay in touch on a practical level. Perhaps you know someone who is immunocompromised and can’t risk a trip to the supermarket, but you can. Or maybe you need a few masks for essential trips out and know someone with great sewing skills. These days, checking in with loved ones means you can provide help to one another without making close contact. Dropping groceries on someone’s doorstep to keep them out of the store can mean the world right now.
Why is communication important? For these reasons and so many more, the vital role of communication during the quarantine cannot be overstated. Now, let’s figure out a few fun and effective ways to stay in touch.
The good news is that, in 2020, there are tons of great ways to connect without visiting in person. You’re likely already familiar with the most popular social media apps, like Facebook and Facebook Messenger, Twitter, and Snapchat. In addition to the usual platforms, you might try something new during the quarantine. Whether you’re having a virtual happy hour or spending time with family on Father’s Day, the possibilities for communication are pretty endless, but here are a few suggestions for virtual hookups and entertainment:
Why is communication important? Because staying connected to the most important people in your life is part of taking good care of yourself! While you’re chatting, you might exchange some other ideas for staying balanced and relaxed these days. Here are a few to get you started:
Remember that it’s okay if you aren’t feeling 100% these days. After all, none of us are! On a societal level, this truly is unlike anything we’ve ever dealt with before. So it’s safe to say that most people aren’t experts at coping with weeks of isolation. Communication is important, even when social distancing. Check on the people you love and be creative about how you stay connected.
So if you’ve been wondering, “Why is communication important?” try a few of these ideas to see how increasing quarantine communication can help you and everyone you love. Hang in there, stay in touch, and just do your best. Hopefully, brighter and healthier days are coming very soon.