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A Key to Surviving Isolation

    Besides the normal stuff like eating right, getting some exercise, and keeping a good daily routine it’s important to still get your social interaction. It’s been a few weeks and everything on the news is terrifying so it’s hard to focus on anything else. But if you try this idea, I’m confident it will help you feel better and leave you more optimistic.

    Try using Messenger, Zoom or Skype to connect with friends and family. If you have a Facebook account use Messenger if not download Skype or Zoom. Everyone in the group will need to use the same App. As long as you have an internet connection its free. I would do it in different sessions, one with family, then one with friends. We started with setting a time and called or texted in advance. It was simple we sent a message to everyone on the list and simply said Messenger Party at 7:30 PM make sure your phone or tablet is fully charged and answer our call with your video option. The grandmother had to be walked through the process in advance but once we got on the call, we were amazed at how much fun we had. Ended up spending 2 hours talking and laughing.  I recommend keeping it to five connections or less because if you get to many it can be a little hard to manage.

    This is not required but I recommend two things that makes it easier:

    #1 If you have a smart TV, mirror your phone with your TV, this allows for a much better experience. On an iPhone swipe up and click on Screen Mirroring then click on your TV. Some TV’s will do this wirelessly and some you will need to plug your phone into the USB connection. Once its mirrored just make your call as usual.

    #2 Buy a little tripod like this one. It helps to set the phone so you can kick back and enjoy. If you don’t have a tripod then prop it up so you’re not showing just your face. Because of formatting issues, put it a few feet away and always have it horizontal not straight up and down.

    At first it’s a little awkward for some, so listed below are some things we did to make it interesting. I gave everyone a tour of our house, showed the weather outside, the pets, the kids, the projects we were working on. We had a bottle of wine and told a few jokes etc. We watched one in our group make dinner while on the call, learned a new recipe. This was particularly uplifting to the grandmother as she is by herself in a small apartment. It totally lifted her up, it was a new way for her to connect and see the family. It was so fun watching her show us around her house and review some of the old family pictures on the wall, etc. I was amazed at how much everyone enjoyed talking and seeing each other. The young and the older all had a good time and it uplifted everyone’s spirit.

    Give it a try and I’m confident you to will get some of that needed interaction that will help you and yours get through this tough time.