Amid the Coronavirus, social distancing is a phrase that seems to be flooding every social media platform and news organization there is. But what does it really mean?
Officially, social distancing also known as physical distancing is a term of non-medical action that deliberately increases the physical space between people with the intention of stopping or slowing the spread of contagious viruses.
In simple terms, it just means staying away from large crowds and per the World Health Organization: When you are around people in public, keep a healthy distance of at least six feet.
Some examples of social distancing happening in our communities right now: The transferring of all public schools and universities from physical to online courses, restaurants have closed their dining areas and are available for take-out only, and any events that would draw in a large crowd (i.e concerts or festivals) have been canceled.
What can you do to practice social distancing? It is understood that there are many professions where you have to physically be there, but if it is possible, opt to work from your home instead. Cancel or postpone any parties, events, or even funerals and weddings. Yes, this isn’t ideal, but it is needed to get past this pandemic in the fastest way possible. Lastly, if you were planning on visiting anyone that you do not live with, consider having a virtual meeting or date instead.
Social distancing does not have to equal social isolation. You are not required to stay cooped up in your home all day long. By all means, go outside, take a walk, or grab take-out from your favorite restaurant.
However, whenever you do leave your home be sure to follow the social distancing guidelines, wash your hands, and be mindful of others around you.
This isn’t the way that anyone would want their year to go, but if we all do our part and practice social distancing and great hygiene then this will be over before we know it.