Coming from one who thrives on social relationships and whose business is largely based on social media presence and engagement, the recent call to “socially distance” ourselves from others has prompted me to evaluate and reflect upon what it means to be social, particularly inside the walls of our own homes.
As I ponder the effects of our modified choices and behaviors, my mind rushes with questions and quickly shifts to overdrive as it plays out a million different scenarios. Our personal and professional well beings are at risk. Our lives have the propensity to be forever altered, perhaps on a large scale. Far reaching, domino effect type stuff.
Nothing will ever replace the power of human touch. We were created for community with each other. In person. Together, physically. Inasmuch as we scroll, tweet, video, post, chat and otherwise engage with one another via web- and app-based platforms, we want to be held. We long for hugs, kisses and pats on our backs. We enjoy high fives and fist bumps. Most of us like to be greeted with smiles and handshakes.
We’re human and intrinsically wired to be connected to each other.
The rise and tremendous success of social media with its powerful ability to broaden and deepen connections on a global scale is a double-edge sword. Consistent, well-executed social media presence can drive revenue, increase sales, foster dialogue and build brand. It can also distract us, pull us away from loved ones and divert our attention.
Could it be that social distancing is simply disguised as social opportunity? During this uncertain, somewhat chaotic time, we are forced into social closeness with our household members while social distancing ourselves from the rest of the world. As we all navigate the hours, days and potential weeks of our new norms, albeit temporary – we hope, I believe we have incredible social opportunity(ies) to:
*Connect/reconnect with family members – have real, unhurried, meaningful conversations with our spouses, children and extended family members. If outside the household, call instead of text.
*Obtain much needed rest/sleep – an extra nap here or there is good for mind, body and soul.
*Exercise and drink water – maintain regular routine or adjust as necessary if avoiding the gym. Outdoor options are good weather permitting.
*Start/finish household chores/projects – Spring cleanup, paint a room, build a shelf, organize a closet…
*Read a book. Write a book.
*Play board games, cards, dominoes – or Twister!
Take some time to evaluate/freshen up/tweak/analyze our social media presence:
How are we showing up? How do we engage? What is our goal? What content is important to us and our followers? Who are our followers? What content are they expecting from us? Are they engaged? How might we encourage others through our social presence?
Social distance or social opportunity? While we might be physically distanced from others for a period of time, we can choose to embrace this season as an evaluation of our social selves so that we emerge as refreshed, rejuvenated individuals ready to once again shake hands with the world.