At the onset of the pandemic, many of us were worried, but we tried to have a positive outlook and it would be over sooner than later. We wore our masks, washed our hands frequently and abided by social distancing rules. But with the current rise of cases, it's easy to feel discouraged, especially since humans are social by nature. By now, you might be torn between being responsible and maintaining your mental health. After all, experts say that being social can lower your blood pressure and even reduce the symptoms of depression. But when it also puts you at risk of illness, something’s got to give. Don’t worry, you can have your cake and eat it too! You just have to be smart about it. So gather up your girlfriends—here’s how to have a girls’ day out while social distancing responsibly.
If the weather permits, and if you or one of your girlfriends has a deck or patio that’s begging to be used, why not get together for coffee or drinks outside? That way, you can all stay six feet apart while chit-chatting and catching up. The fresh air and vitamin D from the sunlight is good for you, so make an excuse to get together and enjoy it. You can even impose a bring-your-own-drink policy to decrease the risk of germs spreading. You can still be a great host by providing an outdoor space heater or even have a handful of throw blankets laying around on patio furniture in case people get cold.
If there was ever a time to boost your immune system and improve your cardio and mental health, it is definitely now! Exercising provides countless benefits to the body and the mind, as it not only increases your lifespan but also releases endorphins that make the brain happy. Exercising with friends is even better since it motivates you to actually do it and offers a sense of competitiveness. After all, you’re more likely to do that last burpee when your friends are watching than if you were alone. The only challenge is finding some space to do it. If you can join a local gym, make sure they're enforcing safety precautions like group exercise classes where you’re all spread far apart and have to wear masks. Some gyms even offer classes in public outdoor spaces. Go to the gym’s website or social media pages to see if they're hosting any events near you. Alternatively, you can go for a hike or a socially distanced run together. So pull on those women’s workout leggings and get creative. If there’s a will, there’s a way!
Social interaction doesn’t always have to be in-person. And if your friends live in different parts of the state, country, or even world, getting together during a pandemic might be impossible. Get the most out of your smartphone or that work laptop that you’ve been glued to while working from home, and host a virtual teleconference. There are loads of apps for this purpose, and they’re easy to use.
Set a date and make a point not to cancel. You can even have certain themes for your virtual girls’ days out. For example, if you “meet” twice a month, have one meeting be a virtual book club. Another meeting can be a happy hour. You can even make it a point to put on makeup and get dressed up instead of sitting around in your comfy women’s loungewear all the time. Give yourself an excuse to dress up, and have fun with it.
Volunteering is a great way to boost your spirits and to be thankful for what you have, including your good health. Although volunteering opportunities may be different these days, they’re still out there. Pandemic or not, people always need help. Consider getting together with your girlfriends to make masks for people who need them. Just make sure it is either a small group of friends or that you have room for all of you to stay 6 feet apart and be responsible.
These are just a few ways you can have a girls’ day out while social distancing. You may find that other opportunities pop up too—and that you’ll get accustomed to the practice of finding ways to get together responsibly.