An Extrovert Trying to Cope with Social Distancing

by - Monday, March 23, 2020

I've opened my blog editor so many times to start writing a post over the past couple of weeks, but the words just haven't come. My husband and I just bought a house and I've wanted to write about that and about getting to find new running routes in my new neighborhood. And I still haven't written my February book post. Or my mid-way through March running post.

But it's hard to sit down and write about "normal" things when nothing really feels normal to me.

After we settled on the house, when you could still grab a drink at your favorite neighborhood spot.

Some days, I'm coping ok with that, and some days, my extroverted soul feels so out of sorts. I don't know what to do with myself with the deep lack of human interaction, and some days that's really evident in my demeanor and energy levels.

On the work front, things are about as normal as they can be. The work itself has changed a bit to support covid-19 communication efforts. That's stressful, but our team is awesome, and emergency-related work is something we're used to. I'm also used to working from home 3 to 4 days per week since my office relies heavily on telework in normal times. So we were more prepared than many to switch to full time telework.

But in normal times, when I would close my laptop after a day of working from home, I typically had something to look forward to in the evenings -- often a workout class at a gym, sometimes my book club or dinner with friends.

Basically something that would bring me in contact with other people.

I've felt the absence of that acutely over the past week.

And it's going to be our reality for a little while. So I'm trying to figure out how to make sure I don't go completely insane.

Getting outside for some long walks has been helpful. We're generally luckily that in the DC-area the weather has been fairly mild making walks a pretty easy thing to do. I've been using some of the nicer days to explore our new neighborhood while listening to podcasts and audio books.


I'm also trying to figure out what a new workout routine looks like. I've never been more grateful that running is my favorite workout since it's perfect for this whole social distancing stuff. But with all my injuries, yoga, barre classes and swimming have been really important cross-training for me.

Swimming is not an option with all the pools closed. But many of my favorite fitness studios are trying to figure out live-stream options for their classes.

Plus, I've been taking advantage of Openfit too for their wide selection of workout videos. If you're looking for a yoga class that will help mellow you out, I highly recommend the yin yoga flow from Openfit. (If you want to try out Openfit, they're offering a 30-day free trial. Just go to and use the code FRIENDSFAM. Nope, I'm not getting paid to promote this).

The other piece I'm trying to figure out is how to still "see" people even if that means virtually. Tomorrow I'm having "dinner" with friends. We're going to order takeout from our favorite places and then get on a Google Hangout while we eat together and catch up. My husband's softball team did a virtual happy hour last week over Google Hangout, and it was just really nice to catch up with friends. It's obviously not the same as being together in-person, but I'm hoping it will help fill the my need for human interaction, while at the same time prevent me from driving my introverted husband completely insane.

I don't know how long this will be our reality, but I know for myself I need to figure out what a "new normal" looks like. Given all my new-found solo time, maybe I'll actually get better about blogging more frequently. If nothing else, I promise to at least get that February book post up soon.

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