Creating Space for Virtual Distancing
In a time where connection requires a wifi password, “virtual distancing” can be a key factor in helping all of us thrive through this pandemic.
What is virtual distancing?
It is exactly what it sounds like. Taking space to distance yourself from the devices that connect us to each other.
Now more than ever we have been connecting through technology. The power of smartphones, laptops, and wifi has been monumental in this global pandemic. Thanks to this incredible technology, people have been able to maintain employment by working from home, and children have been able to attend school and continue obtaining an education. Technology has allowed people to have access to medical and mental health services from the safety and comfort of their homes. Having to quarantine and social distance during this pandemic has made connecting to our loved ones difficult, but thanks to technology, we have been able to connect with our friends and family through social media outlets and virtual conference programs.
Although there is so much good that has come from this technology, it is also important to implement boundaries. Virtual distancing is a concept that allows us to make an active effort to disconnect from the devices that are connecting us during this time. I have found that it is easy to be connected to technology throughout the day, whether the connection is on a smartphone, computer, or by watching shows through a streaming service. All of the interactions, while being of use, can interfere with time to self-reflect, be present in a moment, and connect with either the people or animals that surround us.
Virtual distancing can promote opportunities to set intentional time during the day to step away from technology and practice sitting with your thoughts, meditating, being present in the current moment, or connecting with those around you. Putting down the phone and turning off the devices around you will allow an opportunity for different types of connections. Whether the connection is with yourself, your pet, your friends, your partner, or your family members.
Finding it hard to put down the gadgets?
Start small. Start by setting a timer. This will allow you to be mindful of what is going on around you while promoting focus on the moment, rather than the time. When the timer ends, allow yourself to re-engage in your other activities.
Not sure what to do when you disconnect?
Create a gratitude list, set goals, or journal. Stretch, practice deep breathing or listen to a guided meditation. Work on a puzzle, or invest time in a new hobby. Keep a Thought Log or To-Do list. These simple suggestions can help you feel refreshed, and you may find pleasure in new ways. Invest in yourself through the opportunity of disconnecting with devices and reconnecting with your own personal growth. When social distancing is in the past, how will you have grown from this experience?
Keep Connecting with Care,
Dara Kobrin, LMHC