Academic

Connecting (Virtually) in Times of Physical Distancing

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Erynn Mayes
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March 13, 2020

In the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak, as the public are being asked to remain physically separated, many are finding new and innovative ways to stay connected.

Though gyms are closing many are offering virtual classes; though concert venues are closing world-renowned musicians are offering free concerts, rooftop performances and online music classes; and while offices are closing many are taking this unique opportunity to make stronger connections with their professional networks.

 

How social isolation impacts physical health

Human beings are social creatures by nature, and research has found that depriving us of connection can be detrimental to our physical health.

According to a study by the American Psychology Association, social isolation heightens physical health risks to the same degree as smoking 15 cigarettes a day, or having an alcohol use disorder. It’s also twice as harmful to both physical and mental health as obesity. On the flip side, researchers have also found that adults who participate in social activities tend to live longer.

Now is the time to make connections

Though physical isolation can take its toll on mental health and physical wellbeing, digital conversations and connections can go a long way in reminding us that we’re not alone, even if we can’t be with each other in person.

In the midst of this crisis it’s therefore more important than ever to reach out and make connections, especially for those in the process of plotting their careers. After all, many of the professionals that students, recent graduates and those in between jobs would benefit from connecting with are now at home, less busy than usual, and seeking more human contact.

Taking the initiative to expand your network in times of crisis will also demonstrate your dedication to professional development, your resilience in difficult times, and your ability to be proactive.

That’s why Ten Thousand Coffees is making it easier than ever to find those connections that will benefit you most. Start by going to your University Hub to get matched with a professional in your industry and set up a virtual coffee meeting.

Though there are many reasons to feel alone right now there’s also many ways to connect. Times are tough for many but this unique moment is not without a few advantages. As professionals are spending more of their days at home they too are looking to stay connected. Despite being asked to remain physically distant, now is the perfect time to use the tools at our disposal to build, grow and maintain our personal connections.  

Samantha Fraser, 21, Business Administration student at Nova Scotia Community College reached out with us to share her three tips on how to stay connected in times of physical distancing and beyond.



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