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Loving and Communicating from Afar – When face to face is not an option.

Loving and Communicating from Afar – When face to face is not an option.

March 25, 2020

Now that ‘social distancing’ and ‘quarantine’ are fully a part of the American vocabulary. It is important that we don’t forget how to communicate with one another.  In our desire to stay healthy physically, let’s also make an effort to stay healthy emotionally by remaining connected with the important people in our lives. One of the best things to do right now is love people from afar. Even if you are not worried about the virus yourself, we all need to protect ourselves and others from spreading the disease in any way.  In a time where it is easy to self-isolate, it is more important than ever to remain connected in ways that are safe and healthy.  Here are a few ideas to help you remain connected when you cannot do it face to face:

  • Phone calls. A quick phone call to check in with a friend can bring great cheer, especially when everyone is stuck at home and unable to gather as we are used to. Especially for those who do not have family members keeping track of them, take time to call just to check in..
  • Group Texting: For many people, texting is almost the only way to contact someone right away. Set up texting with a group of family members and touch base at least daily.  That way everyone knows you are doing OK and can also set up help if needed. You can also easily send photos over group messaging.
  • Virtual Church. With so many events being cancelled, many churches are fortunate to be able to broadcast their services live on their websites or through Facebook live.  Don’t miss an opportunity to participate in Sunday services by watching on line.
  • Stay Socially Connected on your mobile phone through Facebook Messaging. You can track family activities through Facebook and message directly to friends and family members easily anywhere in the world right from your own Facebook page. Comment on what they are posting daily to stay in touch and keep the communication fresh. Share your own stories, favorite photos and positive content.  Stay away from fear based media.
  • Email is the golden digital communication tool.  The beauty of email is that you can answer when you have the time.  The challenge is making sure that you word things well.  Written communication doesn’t work as well as verbal.  Body language can make a big difference when you are sharing information or ideas. But email has taken the place of letter writing and can be a great way to stay in touch.
  • Attend events through Facebook Live. Especially with children, this is a great way to stay in touch and even participate in activities at a distance. When they are singing or playing, or reading out loud, arrange with your children to record it live so you can view them in action. By attending an event virtually, you can also interact with the kids by video chat while watching.

Digital Cards

  • On line greeting cards are a great way to cheer your friends and neighbors while you are not able to visit.  Jacquie Lawson cards an artist who creates interactive cards with illustrations depicting nature and pets that you can download without limits for a $20.00 yearly fee. Kids and adults love getting these cards for celebrations throughout the year.
  • WWF has a great free Ecards site and you can show that you care about wildlife and the planet at the same time. Just make sure you check all the boxes correctly or they may save your information to send updates by email.

Video Chats

  • Set up a Skype account to connect with your family by video. Use the video chat feature to see each other during the conversation. These video chats will allow you to connect with each family member in a special way.
  • Zoom is another video meeting digital platform.  It is free if you meet for less than 30 minutes and is said to perform better than Skype. 
  • Facetime is an IPhone app through Facebook that allows you to video chat one on one or in groups. 

Even from a distance, we are all in this together and we all need to stay connected.  Take time to stay in touch and bless the lives of those you love. CRISTA Senior Living, as other senior communities in Washington state, has limited visitation of our most susceptible population.  The ideas expressed here are great ways to remain in contact with the seniors you know and love.  Find out more at https://cristaseniorliving.org/