Published on Nov 21, 2021
Online Playdates, Game Nights, and Other Ways to Socialize at a Distance
Human beings are deeply rooted in emotions. Every one of us looks for some way to interact with people. We are habitual of hanging out with our dear ones regularly, and socializing with people every day is part of our daily activities. But, due to the covid-19 pandemic, everyone is having a hard time socializing.
We all have shared common feelings of being trapped at home due to the pandemic for a long time. We are deprived of being in social contact with people. It's mandatory to maintain at least 6 feet distance from others for our safety.
Even though many places are opening up after a nine months-long lockdown period, it's still advised to maintain a social distance to avoid being infected by Corona Virus and make other people infected as well.
Due to an indeterminate future, people worldwide have to follow social-distancing guidelines to avoid the risks. And, indeed, they are seeking an escape to rejoin with their cherished ones.
So, here I will discuss ways to connect to people remotely to feel lively and share bonding.
Understanding Socializing and Purpose of Socializing
Everyone around plays a part in the socialization process of an individual. Any growing individual learns habits and values through interaction with people. They get skills to be functioning members of society.
The purpose of socialization is to educate us as children to control biological instincts. It builds a consciousness that matches society's standards. Socialization teaches and develops significance in social life (what is essential and valued). It trains us for different social parts we will have to perform.
Socialization involves being with and doing things with. It's about loving the company of people, trusting in them, and letting them trust in you.
Making friends, interacting with people, voice and video chatting with people, hanging out with friends, joining a club or party, and many more are the ways of socializing. These practices remove feelings of isolation and foster a sense of comfort, belonging, and happiness that allows people to feel connected.
Health benefits of socializing include:
- building confidence and self-esteem,
- good mental health,
- increased quality of life
- reduced blood pressure,
- reduced stress and anxiety levels,
- reduced risk of Alzheimer’s,
- boosts immunity and increases brain performance
It helps see our lives with a bigger and different perspective when we realize some people count on us and there is someone who we can count on.
Can We Socialize at a Distance?
Due to the going pandemic, we have to socialize at a distance. And during this time, it's not a wish but a compulsion to socialize virtually and maintain social distance.
The answer to the question is 'can we socialize at a distance' is 'yes.' You can socialize in different ways even when you are at a distance. Let's talk about the ways to socialize at a distance.
Ways to Socialize at a Distance
The current situation has made it difficult for the kids to see their friends in weeks due to social distancing. For already worried parents, it raises a bar to make sure that their kids have a way to stay connected so that they do not become isolated.
Older aged people are also having a hard time figuring out how to stay connected to their peer groups. They are under different pressure, and it's better to find ways to socialize at a distance to share how they feel.
It may hold children as well as adults socially linked to their groups. Let's take a look deep into online playdates, game nights, and other ways to socialize at a distance. These are the ways to adapt to everyday life during this pandemic.
Setting Up Online Playdates
Social media apps and programs such as Google hangouts, Zoom, FaceTime, WhatsApp, Facebook, etc., have made it possible for children to spend some digital time with peers and close groups.
You can allow kids to play games or have a movie night to build a network. It is essential for your child's well-being to visit a group of schoolmates virtually or have one-to-one conversations with their pals.
These applications also help children feel linked socially as they would in a school environment, helping them to better understand each other, work together on school works, play games or sit together while doing a little schoolwork. The kids don't need to have a continuous talk; they will have an assurance of having a friend around when needed.
Organize a Game Night For Your Kid And Their Friends
Online games are the best way to socialize with individuals even when they aren't together in the same room. You can arrange a game night for your kids to play or a movie night to spend some time socializing.
Online gaming sites help your children to play with their friends without their physical presence. Kids can play games using Xbox, Nintendo online to play online video games against their friends by sharing their usernames. Not to forget there is the risk of letting kids play online games for a long time.
Online Conversations To Socialize
Summing up the method on other ways to socialize at a distance, people can socialize online on different platforms. You can share your day-to-day activities to feel you have someone by your side always.
Some platforms provide video chats, voice calls, and share memes. Any age group can stay connected to their dear ones with the help of online platforms. Tween and Teens are well aware of social media online conversation, and they mostly communicate with their peers on social media and through other mediums.
While little kids are not used to communicating with their friends virtually, you can connect your kids to their grandparents, parents, peers, and the good thing is it is both ways. Little ones can feel they are around their loved ones when they are communicating with them virtually. You can allow some time for your kids to use social media during this pandemic, however, do not forget to keep eye on your kid’s social media activities.
10 Different Ways To Socialize At a Distance
Below I have listed methods to socialize at a distance. Some are for children, while some focus on all age groups. Children can get these methods with their peer groups or with their family members.
1.Online Board Games
It fits well for two to four players at home who are interested in board games. Games like ludo, chess, scrabble, monopoly, Pictionary, Yahtzee, etc., are fun games for kids. Each player would need to move their pieces on their screen and enjoy the most games.
It is another classic game we all play in our childhoods. The best thing is you can play it online, either individually or in teams, via Zoom, Skype, Google Hangout, and other video chatting apps. One player gives the name of the movie, and another demonstrates it so that other kids can guess its name.
Whatever your kid's into—knitting, decoupage, Legos—they have a friend with similar interest. They can either work together or teach one another in doing so. DIY crafts grab interest from people of any age. It can make you create top toys for girls' or boys' kids together.
DIY is not just a way of spending time but also doing something creative with peer groups. You can share your DIY with your friend on social media or in a group chat where people have similar interests.
In scavenger hunts, parents can lead the search for younger children. They can ask children to find anything. For instance, "Find me a pebble that is blue!" or, "Find a paper that is red" or, "Show me, three food that begins with the letter A!". You will want to come up with a list of items together while playing scavenger hunts with older children and then compete to find them first.
This show-and-tell works for a small number of children. You can organize the game online and help your kids to play the game. Each kid takes a turn to show their room, kitchen, garden something around their home and chat about why it's unique. One can pick themes that fun to talk about.
People of any group can create content like written blogs, vlogs, YouTube videos, etc. This is a way of socializing even at a distance. For instance, if you want to make YouTube Video with your friends, one can come up with an idea, another can come up with methods of pursuing it. And together, you can come up with great content to work with.
Tutorials are a way to interact with people. Showcase your talents by making tutorials on different 'how-to' topics or hacks. You stay in long-term contact with people at a distance and build up a community with the same interests. Sharing knowledge on the different topics you know is also a great way to interact with people online.
People with music interests can find a way to socialize even at a distance. They can practice together or can teach each other to play different instruments. This is the best time for musicians to create music virtually and entertain their audience.
9.Play Online Games
Social games and apps help children and parents connect either within the same home or not. Some include voice or text conversation to play. Some games like Fortnite, Pubg, Roblox, words with friends, league of legends, and many more. This is fun for people and is a way of interacting with family or people you can't see in person.
10.Online Dancing and Singing
With all going online today, you can perform the dancing and the singing virtually. Anyone can learn and teach dancing and singing to their fellow friends. Dancing and singing is a great way to refresh one's mind. It helps to connect people with the same interest all around the globe.
Tips For Socializing Virtually
Lack of socializing increases the stress and anxiety levels of human beings. Some people can talk to anyone around them while some blacks out in front of new people or are afraid of socializing. But, socializing shapes us in ways we don’t realize. So, here are some of the ways you can push yourselves out of the box and get comfortable around new people.
1.Make Small Talk
Just like any heavy exercise needs a warm-up before, small talk works the same as that warm-up to get to know each other. It's a gesture that shows you are friendly and approachable.
2.Share About Yourself
Communication should always be both-sided if you want it to keep going. Share about yourself while you are asking about them. It makes people around you comfortable to share if they know about you.
3.Approachable Body Language
Even when you have nothing to give, you can give a smile. Smiling shows you relaxed and approachable. Maintain eye contact while talking and relax a bit while being in a company. These are the activities that show socializing is of concern to you.
4. Don't Overthink About Any Situation
Stop thinking about the person who can talk to anyone anytime and wish to be like them. Be you when you are in a company; it's genuine. Remember, people don't think even as little as you think about yourself or judge yourself.
5. Don't Judge Yourself
If you are worried about being judged, then maybe you are the one judging yourself. Low self-esteem or social anxiety often leads to excessive thinking of sounding dumb in front of others. Talk to yourself in a mirror-like you would talk to a good friend. And, if at any point you start judging yourself, replace that negative self with positives.
But, remember there are many ways one can start a conversation and keep that conversation going. You need to build trust in yourself and let people put trust in you. Also, don't forget to be a listener while talking with others; it shows you are interested in them.
Summing up, physical presence is not a must to socialize these days. Back then, it required physical presence to know what was going into everyone's life. But now, all we have to do is be on digital media.
In simple language, anyone present on the digital media can find a way to connect to whoever they want with. You can set up a virtual party or watch party by inviting friends online via the zoom app. This way, one can socialize at a distance, without the need for a meeting every day.
However, you also need to keep in mind that your kid’s schools are running online due to which their screentime has increased. And letting kids use their devices for a longer time will increase their screen time even more. Therefore, you need to manage your children’s screen time when they have online classes. Also, do not forget to check screen time of your kid’s devices.
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