The year 2020 forced people into an introverted lifestyle. For some, “social distancing” has become social isolation.

Do you feel like you’re stuck in a rut spending too much time on your own? Are you tired of screens and functioning in a “virtual” world?

Well, here are four ways to ease social connection back into your life, whether you’re an introvert or someone who’s had the introverted lifestyle forced on you. Keep in mind that you need to manage your health risk regarding social exposure and becoming infected with COVID.

1) Get out there responsibly but within your comfort zone

Push yourself to try new things. But live responsibly for yourself and others.

Try new things in new places. Enjoy activities and events in venues that follow established health protocols. Do something that moves you outside of your comfort zone a little bit as you reintroduce yourself to the world.

Maybe it’s time to frequent your favorite restaurant or coffee shop. Maybe attend a concert or a birthday party but hang out in the corner with a friend.

If you’re a person of faith, maybe it’s time to visit your faith community. Be wise. Wear your mask. Keep sanitizer with you.

You want to push yourself but not too fast or too far.

2) Meet new people on YOUR terms

Start a conversation with a friendly person at your favorite store or restaurant. Go somewhere where you might make a new friend – someone with whom you share common interests.

3) Push yourself to participate in something new

Search online for fun things to do in your local area. Doing something new can be a great way to boost social interaction in your life.

4) Welcome the spotlight

This might not be for everyone. But have you considered small groups where you become the focus of attention at some point, like a book club, creative writing group, or karaoke?

Reintroducing yourself socially is difficult but not impossible. Practice pushing yourself to do new things but on your terms and without risking pushing you past your limitations.

The fears of 2020 may have created anxiety issues for some people. So meeting with a therapist can help with processing and managing those emotions.

Although mask-wearing and social distancing are some of the protocols that are still in effect, don’t let them lead you into a lifestyle of social isolation. Be responsible, and make social connection an important part of your day by living your life on YOUR terms.

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash

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