5 ways to beat the social isolation blues

Head out into the great beyond (your backyard, that is)

Beaches, parks and other public spaces are still reserved for exercise only, but a backyard picnic is a great way to reconnect with your family – throw down a few rugs (at an acceptable social distance), mix up some quarantinis, and relax to the sound of your children going absolutely beserk after being cooped up for weeks on end. Don’t have a backyard? A floor picnic will do the trick just as well!

Recreate a modern artwork

In late March, the Getty Museum challenged its Twitter followers to recreate a well-known artwork using family members and household objects. What started out as a fun way of passing time in lockdown became an international phenomenon – check out the Getty Museum Challenge subreddit for some of the best submissions so far. Raid your cupboards, assemble your family (and up to two friends!), and let your creativity run wild.

Learn a new skill

Let’s face it: with bars and restaurants still closed, you’re likely to have more than a few free evenings up your sleeve. Why not spend it learning a useful (or entirely impractical) new skill via livestream? Make your own beeswax wraps, create up-cycled jewellery or make soaps and bath bombs with Class Bento; take an online dance class with Move Through Life; or polish your business skills with an online workshop from Guild of Objects – there are literally thousands of online self-improvement opportunities just waiting for you to find them.

Send a letter

There’s something about handwritten letters that email can never replace. If you’re separated from much-loved friends and family (who isn’t?), now’s the time to put pen to paper. Head to Etsy to purchase handmade cards by local artists, order some stamps online (no post office visits required!) and spend an afternoon crafting messages to your nearest (or furthest?) and dearest.

Get cultured

Almost every cultural institution on earth is launching a digital program, so get amongst it from the comfort of your couch. The Sydney Opera House’s From Our House to Yours program delivers everything from classical music to conversations with cultural icons, while the Australian Dance Theatre is streaming a different performance every fortnight. Check out the Wheeler Centre for conversations about books, writing and ideas, drop in on Live Nation’s Live from Home series to bring artists like Metallica and Tash Saltana right into your living room, or schedule a weekly movie night with the Australian Centre for the Moving Image.

Whatever you do, stay safe and socially distant. The madness of 2020 may not be over yet.

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