1. Experiment with new ways to keep in touch. Applications like Zoom, Snapchat, Facetime, Google Meet, Discord, and Duo are a great way to see your friends, but there are also websites like Skribbl or Club Penguin that allow you to play games with the people you love.
  2. Meet up with your friends in small groups while practicing social distancing rules. If you want to meet up with your friends, you can, as long as you follow CDC guidelines. Wear a mask, frequently wash your hands or use hand sanitizer, and stay six feet apart.
  3. Become pen pals with your friends. Getting letters in the mail from the people you love can be exciting, so a fun activity you can start doing with your friends is sending each other letters. Writing letters is also a different way to connect compared to texting or emailing, and it can be good to switch things up.
  4. Don’t be afraid to have some alone time. The pandemic has been a stressful time for all of us, so it is important to make time for yourself to relax. Being attached to a screen all day can be unpleasant, so it is important that you use this time to try new things or pick up a new hobby, not necessarily online. It’s important to check in with your own mental health, and taking time to spend alone can be very beneficial in relieving stress. 
  5. Understand that you can outgrow some of your friendships. People change, priorities change, and ideologies change over time, especially with a stressful occurrence like a pandemic. Usually as you get older, you may find that people you used to be close with are no longer your friends, and that’s okay. No matter what, it’s important to remember that you are worthy and you are enough.

 

-Valarie, New Jersey

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