How to stay in touch with friends & family

As the restrictions around Coronavirus heighten with each passing day, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to keep in touch with people that we used to see and talk to everyday. We’ve been separated suddenly from our university friends and course tutors, and unfortunately it may be a while until we can all be together again. It can be very easy to feel isolated from the rest of the world. With all this uncertainty it’s so important to have some familiarity in your life, by helping support both you and others to get through this tough time together.

We’re all missing our friends and family right now, so I have some advice to help maintain your social connections with this sudden change to life as we know it.

Technology is your best friend right now, with many different ways we can all communicate with one another. For instance:

  •  Call your friends and family members on a regular basis and check in on them. No matter how dull you think your lockdown is going, it’s nice to share experiences of our day and hear a friendly voice down the phone. Even set up call dates and call that person at a specific time each week.
  • Use social media to keep up to date with everyone’s lives. My employer has set up a wellbeing page, where we all post things about our day and how we’re getting on. There are many photos of failed attempts at baking and regular jokes to keep us amused. Consider setting up a social media page to keep updated with your community!
  • Video calling is always a fun way to test our technology capabilities. You can video calls several medias including Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, Skype, Zoom, Google Hangout and Apple Facetime.
  • Keep to your regular communication routine. For instance, my extended family always have Sunday dinner together, and whilst at university they would always Skype me and place me at the dinner table with them. Now it’s our turn to Skype my grandparents into our Sunday Dinner (no matter how painful it is to help them get the camera working). If you see someone during the week, keep this communication going!
  • Online gaming is also a way to stay in touch with friends and family. Yesterday I played online Monopoly and friendships were tested with every hotel put down in the classic board game. There are unlimited amounts online!

So, there’s just a few ways for you and others to stay in touch! But don’t forget to check up regularly on those in need. Elderly relatives should be checked up on and if you’re able to, help with their shopping or running errands to fully support them. Get to know your neighbours over the fence. Also help support those who you know will especially struggle with being in isolation or those living alone.

But most importantly, remember this is all temporary. We will all be reunited with our friends and family. Organise a meet up and something for you to look forward to once this is all over. I don’t know about you, but I am most looking forward to seeing all my friends and tutors again at my Graduation in December, and that’s what is keeping me working hard!

I hope you all are staying safe during this period and now have some new ideas on how you can keep in contact with the most important people in your life! We can all get through this together!

Best wishes to you all,

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