• Vaughan Relationship Centre: Counselling to Empower.
Connecting During COVID

We are back to pre-COVID behaviours.  The days of lockdown and social isolation are a distant memory.  We are back to working in-office, school drop off and pick-ups, and running kids to activities.  During the pandemic, we fought so hard to have social connections, and now, ironically, many people find they are too busy to connect with others.  During the pandemic, we found creative ways to connect while social distancing and those techniques can still work today. 

Have a coffee or cocktail hour

We all have people in our lives that we think about but don’t have the time to connect with.  Arrange a time with one or more people, connect via Facetime or WhatsApp, and have a conversation while enjoying a cup of joe.  If you are not a morning person, arrange something for later in the afternoon and enjoy a cocktail or mocktail together. 

Not sure what to talk about? Play a game asking each other questions, such as your favourite colour, favourite book, or best vacation you ever took (you can find these questions with a simple Google search).  This is a nice way to know the people in your life on a deeper level.  Keep in mind that reconnecting with family and friends works well when it is scheduled in advance and another time to speak is scheduled at the end of each call.  Everyone marks it in their calendars and work it around busy schedules.    

Spend quality time with your family in your household

Ensuring children get to appointments and after-school activities, supporting aging parents, and keeping up with work demands can sometimes mean not having time to enjoy a meal with your family.  During downtime, everyone is in different rooms, on screens, immersed in social media or texting with friends. Consider scheduling an in-house date night with the family once a week. 

Request your family shut down the screens, leave phones in their rooms, and reconnect by having a screen-free meal together and connecting about your day or your goals for the future.  Sharing your dreams or your struggles could bring you closer together.  

While you may get some moans and groans about spending family time, encourage your family and take a leadership role in making it happen.  Ultimately, the family will appreciate it and hold these memories close. 

Connect with Self

Sometimes, we need time to ourselves to reflect or quiet our minds.  Take some time to journal or meditate for 15 minutes a day.  If 15 minutes feels daunting, start off with 5 minutes and work your way up.  You can also connect with yourself by taking a walk around the block.  Enjoy the time to be with your own thoughts, breathe, and be mindful.  Quieting our minds and having self-reflection can be rejuvenating and allow us to bring our best selves to our relationships.