Working from home can lead to social isolation. The many people who have suddenly become unemployed because they were part time or contract workers have it even worse. These tips can help you avoid depression.
Preparing your emotional and community support network is vital. People are tribal. We all need people.
- Talk with your family and get everyone on the same page, discuss roles, opportunities, and needs as this unfolds.
- Get to know your neighbors. See if you can organize conference calls to discuss resources that can be shared. Make sure to have phone and email contacts for people.
- Families with children may need to either isolate or create shared clusters of a few families that share the load of parenting and homeschooling. Small clusters of 2–3 families will be easier to minimize the viral exposure and collaborate on strong self-protection protocols.
- Elderly or sick people will need people who can shop for them, run errands, and handle things that might bring them into contact with infected people. They may or may not be able to pay for these services. A lot of elderly people live on a small Social Security Check. Do it anyway. Consider it building good Karma.
- Try to figure out who is going to feel the most isolated in your network and make a plan for regular Skype or Facetime calls to check up on them.
- Identify people who are most likely to be most at risk from the likely negative economic impacts and see what you can do to help them. Pool resources for those most in need.
- Get on social platforms that connect you with co-workers and also extended family, friends, even your book club or the group that usually plays role playing games once a week in person. There are many free resources if you have internet or a cell phone. I am a fan of Zoom, but I know some people who like Facebook and others have mentioned Time Banking, which I have never heard of until I took an informal poll online to write this blog article. Turn the video on! People need people.