While the two phrases are being used interchangeably, they actually mean two different things. Abiding by physical distancing rules doesn’t mean you need to socially distance yourself from friends and loved ones.
Sheltering in place somehow sounds less daunting than quarantine, but they are essentially the same thing. The world has been on lockdown for the past couple of months or more, which gives the population plenty of time to reflect.
Some people went introspective and got to know more about themselves, while others have learned to appreciate certain things they have taken for granted. So what are some of the things we have learned?
1. Just How Much We Need Physical Contact
Not everyone will echo this sentiment, but we are sure a lot will. Staying 6 feet apart sounds simple enough, but having that invisible barrier between you and another person (especially if it is a friend or loved one), can create an even wider distance in terms of isolation.
You can no longer give your best friend a hug or shake the hand of a colleague. Instead, people have developed a natural instinct to actually refrain from touching. Avoiding even walking past someone has been a very isolating experience for many.
2. Just How Much Our Everyday Heroes are Willing to Sacrifice for Us
By everyday heroes, we, of course, mean the ones without capes. The healthcare workers and frontline workers put their lives on the line every day so that they can better and even save the life of another.
Pictures have circulated online showing the tremendous amount of effort exhibited by these individuals at this crucial time. The lengths they go to and just how much they push themselves to care for the rest of the world really needs to be commended.
3. Just How Much You Need to Touch Your Face
Since this is a big no-no on the list of precautionary measures, it’s mystifying just how much your nose can itch when you are told you can’t touch it. We bet you never knew how much you touch your face until you were ordered to put a mask over it and avoid touching your fingers to it.
4. How Much Influence the Media has over the Masses
We understand that a pandemic like this in the modern world is an unprecedented occurrence. No matter how unexpected it was, some countries and organizations have dropped the ball on handling the situation even in the early stages.
Mixed information was coming out with entire countries and organizations divided into their views and interpretations and individuals in each household. From small scale to large scale, the world was divided.
We knew in the back of our minds how information put out by the media can influence our actions, but we didn’t know to what extent.
5. How Important Nature is
After being cooped up indoors for a while, it was only then that some people started realizing just how much a stroll around the block mattered to them.
6. How Important Technology is
Can you imagine being stuck at home sheltering in a place without the Internet? Say goodbye to Zoom calls, employee engagement, the prospect of keeping your job for the long haul and working from home, Netflix, and more.
We should consider ourselves lucky at a time like this that technology allows us to be somewhat social despite the physical distancing rules.
7. The Joys of Domestic Work
We don’t mean cleaning as much as we do cooking. How many of you have suddenly learned that all your friends like to bake? Many people are showcasing hidden culinary talents during this time.
What have you learned from physical distancing? Do you agree with the points above? Which ones apply to you?
How to Be Physically Distant without Social Distancing
Speaking of technology, it is literally the only way we can remain physically distant without completely social distancing. Distancing for a while can increase your sense of loneliness, and this is even truer for those who live alone.
Let’s take a look at how we can remain connected during physical distancing.
1. Video Chats
Of course, you have video chats! Discover the convenience of chat apps and programs we can use on all our devices and stay connected with friends and loved ones this way.
2. Exercising (Responsibly)
With the atlasGO app, you can get in some exercise while feeling connected to friends, family, and other participants worldwide. The best part about atlasGO is we are a virtual platform that allows you to participate in and host virtual races for a good cause.
It doesn’t matter where you are in the world or what time it is. You can join in and complete the race at your own pace. The way to keep engaged and social is through the sweaty selfies and virtual high fives offered by all those who join in.
Are you a gamer? Even if you aren’t a hardcore video game lover, there are easy apps to download on the app store that allows you to connect to friends. Play RPGs on your computer, complete with a headset to talk to your teammates, or connect with friends via word games or trivia apps.
4. Learn Something Together
What better time for self improvement than now when you have copious amounts of time on your hands? Try learning something you never got around to learn and indulge in that interest you didn’t have time for before.
You can even do it with friends! Try learning a new language via online sources or apps and convening once a week to share what you have learned.
5. Outdoor Activities
Being physically distant while being social is even easier in a wide-open space. Feel free to have a picnic (with a small group) with everyone being responsibly distant and with the right personal protective equipment (PPE).
Most people have emerged from this pandemic with different views on life. You can be safe and physically distant without having to suffer socially. Make good use of technology and reach out to friends and family. Join our virtual platform at atlasGO and connect with others around the world.
Written by Jess Lin.
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