As a result of the invasion of the COVID-19 virus, we are also being challenged by another unknown toxin, that is, isolation. One of the main solutions to curbing the spread of the virus is to isolate and yet the side effects of that are taking their toll on all of us.
Just recently, I re-connected via messenger "video chat" with a dear friend of my Mom's (and mine too) from Australia who lost her husband not so long ago and she has had to contend with the loneliness of living without him physically with her. She expressed to me that her most difficult challenge vs. being alone is her isolation with not being able to "get out" and go for her morning coffee and stroll around the local shopping area. I'm now trying to connect with her on at least a weekly basis to help with her feelings of isolation. I so wish I could get to Australia right now and help her with this just like so many of us wish we could do this with our families as well. Of course, I'm doing the same thing with my own Mom and Dad every day and we've found What's app working for us so that we can see each other as well.
So how else can we build some connections with those we care about and love to help combat the spread of isolation? Here are some of my thoughts:
Even if you may physically have to stay at home right now, your imagination certainly doesn’t! As a travel professional, I am working to try to provide my community of past, present & future clients with inspiration so you can continue to dream about your future travels. Have you always dreamed of visiting Africa, Australia or New Zealand? Do some research, watch some videos, read some travel books about the destination. Talk with your family and friends about their travel bucket-lists. When this is all over, let’s get planning and make those dreams come true.
Be generous with your actions in your own neighborhood community. Regularly check-in on neighbors who live alone. If you are venturing out to the grocery store or pharmacy or bank, ask if anyone needs anything. Bake 2 lasagnas or loaves of bread instead of 1 and share. Don’t purchase and hoard supplies that you really don’t need. Be kind and generous to your neighborhood “essential” workers who are risking their own well being to provide the services you are using. A very good friend of mine has decided to help with her local "meals on wheels" which I think is a wonderful idea.
Stay in touch with your family and friends via video chat or Zoom-type calls. These days, the average family is spread out all across the country. Coordinate a regular video call with far-reaching family members and close friends to catch up and see how everyone is doing. Take turns sharing funny stories and reminiscing about past events. Plan for future visits or multi-generational vacations you would love to take. Family and close friends are so important and we must continue to try to stay in touch.
So, how will you help to beat these isolation woes? Hopefully you're already doing a lot of this and developing your own antibodies to the isolation and separation toxins that social distancing has thrust upon us. Soon we will be back to “normal” and I’m hoping that it will be an even better “normal” than before - where we have more appreciation for each other and our incredible freedoms to see the world. Remember, I am here to help you make your travel dreams come true.