How to be Social While Social Distancing

Emma Truchan, Features Editor

   With more than two months of quarantine, stir-crazy is starting to set in. Indeed, it’s been difficult for many to go so long without seeing family and friends. But not all is lost; just because we’re practicing physical distancing does not mean that we need to completely disconnect from one another. Rather, this can be used as an opportunity to seek social interaction in new and creative ways.

   Since quarantine, video conferencing services have seen a sky-rocket in usage. Zoom, nearly unheard of before the pandemic, is now a household name. Many have been making good use of its services, holding everything from study sessions, to group work-outs, to “Zoom parties.” These services have offered a social outlet to those craving connection. Junior Taylor Sullivan has used the app for workouts with her Field Hockey Team, and plans to use its screen-sharing feature to watch movies with friends. Other video chat services such as FaceTime and Houseparty are more great ways to see loved ones face-to-face in a safe way.

   By virtue of modern technology, it can be quite easy to stay up-to-date with all your friends through a more passive means than video calls: social media. Whether it be sending each other memes on Instagram or by making a funny duet on TikTok, the countless social media apps available make it rather easy to connect with friends while staying home. The Centers for Disease Control actually recommends the use of social media and video chats to stay connected with loved ones, and notes that the stress of the pandemic and isolation can be difficult to grapple with ( So while in quarantine, indulge yourself a little bit in viewing and creating content on the myriad of social media platforms that exist.

   For those not particularly savvy in the realm of technology, there are plenty of other ways to stay social while staying home. In the age of smartphones, anyone is simply a call away. Now is the perfect chance to phone a friend or catch up with relatives. But if phone calls aren’t your forte, there’s always snail mail. Sending handmade cards with endearing messages to your loved ones is the perfect way to show how much you care. With the great amount of free time now available, getting crafty with your cards is a creative way to spend the day while staying connected with friends.

   Keeping in touch with the ones you love doesn’t always have to be by means of words — it can be through positive action. National Public Radio notes that friendships can be strengthened during this time through “small acts of kindness” ( If you’re missing your bestie, dropping a batch of homemade cupcakes off at their doorstep is sure to brighten his or her day. Organizing a book exchange can be a great way to keep yourself and your friends entertained. Small acts of generosity like ordering a bouquet of flowers to be sent to someone’s home or shipping someone lunch from their favorite restaurant can show how much you care — and helps to support local business, too!

   These uncertain times can feel lonely. But it’s important to remember that there are ways that we can be physically instead of socially distant. From utilizing the interconnectedness achieved by modern technology, to pen-palling an old friend, there are countless ways to retain that sense of friendship from a distance.