Tips For Coping With Social Isolation

Tips For Coping With Social Isolation

Humans are social creatures and we do not always thrive in isolation. That is exactly why state penitentiaries punish prisoners by putting them into solitary confinement. It causes them great mental anguish.

Many of us have felt like prisoners in solitary confinement over the last few months because of the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdown. And many of us have been feeling our own mental anguish from this extended isolation.

Who knows how long this may go on? While none of us have control over what our governments do, we do have control over ourselves and our perceptions of the world. With this in mind, here are some tips for coping with social isolation, for however long it goes on.

Responsible News Consumption

Watching too much news may not help your relationship with your anxiety. Stay informed as best you can, but do not binge-watch.

Get Creative

Being isolated can get boring quickly so it is important that you try and get creative with your time. This could mean painting the living room and rearranging the furniture or getting your partner and kids to learn a new language with you. It could mean experimenting with an old recipe or making up a game with your kids. Just have fun and think outside the box!


Now is a great time to reconnect with friends and loved ones you have not spoken to in a while. And technology like Skype and FaceTime makes it easy to chat with someone no matter where in the world they are.

Stay Active

A lot of the anxiety we may feel comes from the fact we are not moving our bodies as much as we usually do. It is important to stay physically active during this time. So get outside and get some sun. Go for a walk or ride your bike. Not only is exercise good for us physically, but physical activity releases endorphins that make us feel good mentally and emotionally as well.


The world is a chaotic place right now and it seems we are being hit with noise and negativity from all sides. It is important to make time each day for some quiet meditation.

One of the more accessible ways to meditate is through a listening meditation. Find a space in your house where you can be alone and get into a comfortable position. Close your eyes and breathe deeply in and out… and simply listen to the ambient sounds.

What do you hear? The buzzing of a light? A fly? Your dog’s collar rattling down the hall as he scratches. Expand your hearing to see what else can you hear outside your house. Birds? Lawnmowers? Traffic?

Breathe and listen intently for 5-10 minutes. When you listen, you cannot think at the same time, and so you will notice finally your thoughts go quiet. This is paradise!

Working with a skilled, experienced psychologist, therapist, or counselor can support adaptive coping with this situation and navigation of the days ahead. If you are interested in therapy to explore these concerns, I invite you to call or email me to get started working together. Telehealth appointments are available.


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