Staying Connected during Quarantine


The COVID-19 pandemic has increased stress in many people. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) has a guide for coping with stress which includes taking care of your body, taking breaks from social media and the news, and staying connected safely. The CDC guide, however, does not specify how to safely socialize. Fortunately, people are discovering their own ways to stay connected.

Netflix Party is a Chrome extension that allows groups of friends to watch Netflix at the same time. The site, which includes a chat feature, has surged in popularity as friends schedule time to watch any of Netflix’s thousands of shows and movies together.

If you want to watch something that isn’t on Netflix, video call websites like Zoom and Discord allow one person to share their screen so everyone present on the call can watch their choice of movies, shows, or videos. It may get messy in exciting scenes where people want to discuss the movie, as it’s difficult to hear more than one person at a time.

While some have turned to these new technological ways to stay in touch, others have actually decided to go back to pen and paper! Becoming pen pals with your friends can be a sweet option because it takes effort to make a letter and you can include drawings and other little gifts.

If you want to make new pen pals, there are many websites you can use to find new friends in any language. Some of them, such as the mobile app Slowly, allow you to have virtual pen pals so you don’t have to share your address with strangers

A mix of the new and old, virtual book clubs can take up your free time with a good book and connect with your friends about something you might not have discussed otherwise. Time Magazine offered a list of virtual book clubs you can join, as well as advice on how to start your own!

We all feel stressed and isolated during this time. Even if you decide that none of these activities are for you, it can mean a lot to someone if you simply send them a text to check up on them every once in a while. Stay safe and stay sane!