Finding opportunities for me-time and socialization during a global pandemic is tough. Getting enough me-time and socialization during Shelter in Place mandates may seem impossible. But there are solutions!
It is vital that you and your family continue to socialize, especially during these difficult times. For socialization, you can enroll your child in live online classes in subjects students their age are also interested in (and while they are busy, you can get some me-time!). Check out WorldWise Tutoring’s Enrichment courses for students ages 4-19, for instance. Alternatively, you can plan virtual play dates with friends and family using the Marco Polo app, Facetime, or Zoom. Use those apps to schedule a virtual game or trivia nights, for instance. Or, another socialization option is to do drive by’s to see each other in person. Stay in your car and keep your mask on to make this safe. Or try going to a park where people are walking; often just being in the vicinity of other people is nice and feels like socialization. You can also meet up with one friend at the park to throw a football, kick a soccer ball, or play tennis. Many families have found joy in visiting forest preserves. Tip: Rainy days are best because there are fewer people and there is more mud to muck around it. Use this as an opportunity to spend more quality time socializing as a family by playing games or watching movies together. That’s what your children will remember most.
For some guilt-free me-time, go for a walk every day, making it non-negotiable regardless of weather. Sometimes take a family member, sometimes walk while on a work call that doesn’t require your laptop, sometimes walk while on the phone with friends or family, and sometimes just listen to an audiobook or podcast. Librivox and Lit2Go have free audiobooks. Right now our favorite podcasts are: This American Life, Hidden Brain, Science Vs., and Sword and Scale. For some simple me-time, you can also just get in your car by yourself, put on your favorite music, pick a direction, and just go. Or you can hide in another room and watch a show. Whatever it is, schedule me-time and take it. It’ll never feel like there’s time for it. Take the time anyway.
Above all else, remind yourself that this isn’t forever. So take it one day at a time. Including opportunities for socialization and me-time will make the time fly by.