7 Days of Hope – Day 3
by Dr Veerle Van Tricht MD
Are you also enjoying the sunshine like I am? In the UK Corona Time has been replaced by Bikini Time!
Just kidding( a bit) .
Don’t worry…you won’t see me posting any photos of myself on my sun lounger in my garden.
As we are finally easing out of lockdown, during the pandemic, some of you will remain in isolation.
Some of you will be home with your kids
Some of you will be with a partner but…
Others will be separate from their loved ones
And this can lead to loneliness
So what can you do?
Statistically speaking, people who live alone or who are lonely, have a higher risk of becoming ill and have a shorter life expectancy
Population studies of The Blue Zones have shown that people who have good social connections tend to live longer than those who are socially isolated.
So you need to reach out if you are alone.
I am very lucky as I have my 3 teenage children home from school.
They are very happy, like on an extra long summer holiday.
They talk to their friends with their PS4 and we play outdoor games together like baseball, badminton, water balloon fights…
But I know that a lot of you will be alone and what can you do to feel less lonely?
- You can lose yourself in books – we now have time to catch up with all those books we had planned to read and never got around to. Yeah!
- You can finally start writing that book you always dreamed of writing!
- By the way: Have you read my memoir? It is available from Amazon: My Surgeon Talks To Angels by Dr Veerle Van Tricht ( a physical and a digital version).
- We can catch up with online studies, learn a new language or skill…
- We can also watch our favourite movies or discover new European films
- We can take our knowledge and start a business online …
The best way to feel better is by having real human contact.
However, if you cannot be in the same space, you can connect with friends and family online.
Chatting with others around the globe has never been easier!
Thank you satellites!
Whether on Facebook, Skype or ZOOM, talk to others in a virtual ROOM.
Yes, I just made up a silly rhyme, because I can.
Some people have been meeting online and preparing meals together.
Bon Appetit! from my virtual dinner.
You will also find virtual dance parties online which are great for getting you moving and shaking out all of the stress and help to keep you moving while in isolation.
You could join an online exercise class and do exercises with other people. It can be very motivating and great fun to be part of a tribe who are challenging each other to do 100 squats a day or the like.
There is so much happening online at the moment, knitting groups, book clubs, music groups, just take a look and find something that interests you. You could learn how to play an instrument, or learn a new language.
If you don’t have the internet or cannot use Facebook and other online tools to connect with others, you can make an old fashioned phone call. I suggest that you phone at least one person a day especially if you know that they are also alone.
If you have a neighbour who is living alone, you could make them a meal or bake a cake, leave it on their doorstep and pop a note through their letterbox. A kind gesture will help you to feel better and less lost and bored.
Human contact is important for your wellbeing so do try to make the effort to connect with someone at least once a day. We want to stay healthy and mentally well while we are in the pandemic and we will get through this.
Stay Healthy, Dr Veerle Van Tricht
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