At the times in our lives that we are most fragile, we need touch more than ever. From everything we know about social touch, it needs to be promoted, not inhibited. We need the nuance to recognise its perils, but avoiding touch entirely would be a disaster. The pandemic has given us a glimpse of what life would look like without touch. The fear of the other, of contamination, of touch has allowed many of us to realise how much we miss those spontaneous hugs, handshakes and taps on the shoulder. Physical distancing leaves invisible scars on our skin. Tellingly, most people mention ‘hugging my loved ones’ as one of the first things they want to do once the pandemic is over.
Read Laura Crucianelli’s essay in full here
Overwhelm is the most common word I heard throughout 2020 – other than “unprecedented” and “You’re-on-mute”. Staying connected, whether at work or with friends and family has been an intensely challenging affair – how can you do that when the world seems to be heading to hell in a handbasket?
Jean Gamester, writing in the Toastmasters journal has three ideas on coping.
This resonated strongly with me.
The longer the pandemic goes on, the more important the need for connection is. The way we’ve been working for the past year leads us to default to just getting the work done in a very transactional manner. When it’s just about getting the work done, connection suffers. That’s a longer-term problem because people need connection to be at their best.
Read more here
Life’s full of apparent contradictions.
Connection is one of my core values.
I’m also an introvert.
My close friends cannot reconcile the two. Quite often, neither can I.
I need time to recover from human interactions. The interactions are messy. They usually don’t go according to plan. They require ongoing maintenance for “professional” reasons.
The damage or discontent they cause on a daily basis is often transmuted into other areas of my life, especially with people most dear to me.
Thankfully, the daily commute to & from work allows me some time to put a separation between the two.