I don’t know about you, but the past couple of weeks have been hard. Between the ongoing quarantine and COVID-19 restrictions plus what feels like an endless rainstorm in North Carolina, we’re stuck inside. It’s been hard for me to believe that we’ve had stay at home orders for almost a year now. While it’s difficult to fathom, it does create an opportunity to get some creative juices flowing to prioritize connections and relationships and come up with fun ways to stay connected.
I’ve shared some ways that we adjusted to our new normal, including ways to stay in touch with Zoom happy hours, socially distant picnics, and learning new skills. This is the first year that I’ve really felt some seasonal depression, so that loneliness and disconnection from friends and family is really setting in. Since we can’t meet for birthday brunches or end of the work week happy hours, here are 5 favorite ways to stay connected during COVID-19.
5 Favorite Ways to Stay Connected During COVID-19
Mail a handwritten note.
There is nothing better than receiving a handwritten note, in my opinion. When you find yourself thinking of a friend or a loved one, write them a note on your favorite stationary instead! Reach out to your local senior center or assisted living center to send a note to a resident as well. You may just make a new buddy.
Send a gift, just because.
One of my favorite thoughtful gifts I’ve received was a Venmo from a friend telling me that a coffee was on her. It brightened my day and the fact that she was thinking of me was really nice! For Valentine’s Day, my parents sent us a note with a drink on them. The gift doesn’t have to be expensive; it could be a pair of cozy socks like these. This is truly where it’s the thought that counts. If they’ve mentioned a book they want to read, send them a copy and have a book club together!
Drop off a surprise on their doorstep.
Since it’s been so dreary and cold around here, dropping off a surprise on a friend or neighbor’s doorstep is a great way to brighten a day. A house plant is always a fun gift idea for your local friends. For someone out of town, send a flower bouquet, and bonus points if it’s from a local florist. It doesn’t have to be that big of an ordeal, though. It could be their favorite snack and drink on their front stoop. Or a small candle and face mask.
Buy a gift card from a local business.
It’s never been a more important time to shop small than now. So, buy a gift card from a local business and gift it to a friend. Take some time to introduce your friends and family to these local businesses that way. We’ve been big fans of takeout and dining outdoors during this time. If you’re able, don’t forget to tip your servers and baristas a big extra. Bring lunch to your nail tech and your hair stylist.
Check in on your loved ones.
I am so grateful for staying connected with loved ones through text messages and Instagram DMs because I’ve been so burnt out on FaceTime and Zoom. Recently, I’ve been a bit overwhelmed and disconnected, and I can honestly say the check ins are helpful. My best friend messaged me the other day saying “Hey little love. Just wanted to say hi and tell you I’m thinking of you!” And honestly, it put me in a fantastic mood for the rest of the day. My mom makes a point of messaging me each morning to say good morning with a cute GIF. I’m writing this as much for myself as I am for anyone else, those messages sure do mean a lot, especially now.
What are some of your favorite ways to stay connected with others? Let me know in a comment below!