Lack of time and the need for convenience and a ‘quick fix’ is what drives society in this day in age. From fast-food to online shopping, to at-home digital workouts. But how is this social isolation in the culture of convenience affecting our social health?
In recent years, we’ve seen a major shift in shopping behaviour with the boom of the internet. Websites like eBay and Amazon display just how important time and convenience is to our lives and now it seems that the health and fitness industry have caught the convenience bug too. In the last five years ‘at home digital workouts’ have skyrocketed and fitness apps have gone from zero to a whopping 35 million workouts completed online since 2015.
Whilst we crave convenience when we shop, eat and workout, as human beings, we also crave real-time connection. Being in the present moment with the ones you love and fostering meaningful relationships also plays a huge role in our mental and physical wellbeing.
This is a topic I covered on a panel at a Talking Straight LIVE event, where we delved into the discussion of “How Socially Healthy Are You?” Throughout the discussion we spoke about how the way we connect to people, experience a sense of belonging and adapt to social situations with those around us all contribute to our social health. But when we’re fast-tracking our lives in the name of convenience, we can often miss out on the important connections we could be making if we took time to step out from behind the screen.
So, how socially healthy are you? Here are my three tips to ensure your social health is in check:
To be socially healthy, we have to be comfortable with being vulnerable and stepping out from behind the screen to build connections with people in real-time. As more of our daily lives are spent emailing or sending text messages, it’s important to take time out of your day, every day to be present. Being vulnerable is the key to connection because it’s the courage to being open to another human. So, dig deep and find the courage to ask someone you admire for a coffee, catch-up in person for your next meeting or go home for that family dinner you keep putting off.
We’re told to search high and low for our ‘tribe’ – the group of like-minded people that we truly connect with. But what if that ‘tribe’ no longer serves you anymore? What if the people you surround yourself with no longer understand your values and you no longer resonate with theirs either? It’s time to find a new one. Being unafraid to leave a social setting or situation that doesn’t align with your true self will allow you to step into your worth and make space for new people and relationships in your life that align more seamlessly with your authentic self.
Social Media is full of negative and triggering content, so being mindful and conscious of what you share and say will have a major impact on other people. Instagram especially, is a great platform to share about your life, as well as news in politics, the world and the environment, so ensuring this information is being presented in a way that is mindful to others and that you would be happy to receive, is important to our social health. That’s one of the main reasons why I decided to launch Soul Alive through Instagram (Soul Alive is where live-guided meditation classes are delivered via a private Instagram account). To try and use social media as a channel to experience something meaningful. We spend a lot of time on social media now, so it’s important to think about how we can use it mindfully.