Hearing sounds and being able to communicate are important whether ‘social isolation’ is a short-term inconvenience or an ongoing journey for those with hearing loss. Adjusting to social distancing is hard work – it takes time, effort and patience. And despite our best efforts, we may experience feelings of loneliness and isolation at times. But there’s good news – there are lots of ways to stay connected and help keep our sense of balance even when our regular routines have been turned upside down. 

Here are ten ideas to help you stay connected while practising social distancing:

  1. Schedule regular video chats – We’re lucky to be living in a time when there are so many free video chat options that help us stay connected to friends and family, face-to-face. Whether it’s a quick check in, a virtual happy hour, or a watch party, we can stay in touch with the people we love (all from the comfort of home).

  2. Let your creativity shine – New apps are being released daily – many of which encourage you to get creative. Short video clips of you perfecting/inventing a new dance move or reimaging a scene from your favorite movie not only provide hours of enjoyment for you, they could also bring a smile to others.

  3. Start your own blog/vlog/podcast –Is there a topic you just can’t stop talking about? Why not try creating a blog, vlog or podcast? There are many free resources out there to get you started. It’s a great way to start conversations and grow a community of like-minded people.

  4. Practice (remote) acts of kindness – Missing someone special? Post something special to their social media wall or send them an e-card. You can also help those organizations closest to your heart by making an online donation.

  5. Play your favorite games– Whether it’s on your phone or computer, there are many websites and apps that let you play your favorite board and cards games solo or with your friends. This is a great way to keep that weekly euchre game going while also practicing social distancing!

  6. Tag old photos and memories - Now is the time to scan, upload and tag friends and family in those hilarious throwback pics! It’s a great way to share a laugh and a story.

  7. Learn something new – We all feel a sense of pride when we learn a new skill and the internet is bursting with opportunities to grow! Online learning provides a comfortable and convenient way to take your career or hobby to the next level. Most companies offer a free trial, so you can give it a test drive before committing to purchase.

  8. Take a virtual exercise class – Just because you can’t go the gym, doesn’t mean you can’t workout! Personal trainers all over the world are offering free virtual exercise classes to help you stay active while staying inside. Don’t have free weights? No problem! Soup cans or liquid laundry bottles will do the trick!

  9. Watch live concerts online – Whether it’s in the park, a local bar or a big concert hall, there is just something so moving about live music. Just because you’re practicing social distancing, it doesn’t mean you have to give up supporting your favorite group. Many professional and amateur artists are offering free, live concerts on Facebook and YouTube. This is a great way to relax after a long day, while also interacting with others in the live chats.

  10. Join an online book club or discussion group – This is a great way to connect with and meet others from around the world that have similar interests. No matter what your hobby is, the internet is sure to have a discussion group dedicated to that very thing!

Remember, we’re in this together. Let’s take steps daily to make sure we stay connected.