Carnegie Mellon University

COVID-19 Updates

Information and resources for the CMU community

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Coping & Support

Staying Connected While Physically Distancing

COVID-19 poses a threat to our physical health, but we are also social creatures. Social distancing guidelines and other stressors can take a toll on our mental health as well. That's why it is so important to continue to find creative and effective ways to keep your mind and social circles healthy.

Here are some tips for staying emotionally connected with others:

Get Creative with Your Connections — Social connections help us feel less isolated. They contribute to our physical and mental health, and remind us of our shared humanity. Sometimes this is done via Zoom, social media or by phone, but it can also take the form of letter writing, meeting up outside or setting up virtual meals.

Sustain Your Self-Care — It is difficult to focus on higher level processing if you are not prioritizing your own health and well-being. Activities like exercising, listening to music, prayer, recreation, time spent in nature, mindfulness and service are meaningful ways you can commit to your personal health, creating space for purpose and joy while also connecting with other people.

Check in with Others — Find a lower-risk way to check in with those around you. A quick chat as you're passing someone on the street or in the hall is a great way to connect. Not only does it feel good to be kind in this way, it is nice when the kindness is reciprocated.

Establish and Communicate Boundaries — In an evolving situation like a pandemic, it's important to revisit and reestablish what activities and practices you are comfortable with, knowing that these lines can shift and change over time, in different situations and with new information. It's important to communicate with friends and family in a way that makes everyone feel validated. Healthy communication may involve setting new boundaries on what you're OK with talking about. 

Continue Learning — At Carnegie Mellon, we believe it is essential to commit to lifelong development. Check out the wide variety of trainings and workshops we offer to explore your personal and professional development while staying connected to our community: