In a world where physical contact is a liability, the ease of slipping into despair and isolation has never been so tempting. Perhaps the greatest kindness we can lend to one another is reaching out to the people that meant something to us before everything changed. Here's why you should message your friend today.
1. Potential smiles
Just smiling can make a difference in your attitude. What better way to spend a break in your day than sharing a smile with someone you care about? It can be so easy to sit in front of your screen and grimace, and it's likely you and your friends are sharing the same expression. Seeing a familiar face over a video call or even just hearing the voice of someone that is missed can change the entire trajectory of one's day. Reach out — share a smile!
2. Get out of your bubble
Your world can appear to start and end within the four walls of your room these days. Gaining different perspectives can help remind us to get out of our own heads, and maybe even get lost in something new. Go beyond the usual "how are you doing?" Consider asking about their favorite moment of the day thus far or something that made them laugh.
3. They miss you
It can be easy to sit and think that no one is thinking about you, and it can be difficult to express or even cope with those thoughts. The truth is, we are all human, and for every thought and feeling you have, billions have thought or felt the same way. In fact, your friends are likely thinking the same thing, worried that reaching out would only be a nuisance. Don't be afraid to make that first move!
4. We're all struggling
One way or another, this year has impacted all of us. No matter where you are in the world, this virus has changed the way things are done. For many, especially those in school, things are completely upside-down, oftentimes only made worse by professors and school administration that continue to miss the mark on addressing the current needs of students. Our default, in a world that seems to be crumbling around us, is to isolate even further and suffocate under the piles of work that continue to stack up. Breaks are important. Laughs with friends are important. Step away from your screen and have a chat with a friend — you've earned it.
Remember, you're not in this alone. The next time a random memory comes to mind, or you start to wonder how a friend is doing, take that as a sign to check-in on them. Chances are they will appreciate it more than either of you will ever even know.