The internet offers many opportunities to keep people social, which improves mental and physical well-being. Pick the right mixture for you from our Guide and find great ways to stay connected to people even when they are far away!
Just because you *are* at home doesn’t mean you have to feel *stuck* at home! GetSetUp wants you to make the most of the time you spend in your home. Our Make The Most Of At Home Guides will walk you through different ways to get the most out of your time at home. Whether you are at home due to winter weather, the pandemic, health reasons, or something else you can use this time to explore!
Guide for getting social virtually
Most important during this time is that you make sure you stay connected to the people and things you love! Of course, you can do that the good old-fashioned way via the telephone, writing letters or safe social distancing walks outside with masks. However, many people aren’t aware of all the opportunities that the internet provides to keep people social.
You can pick the right mixture for you and find great ways to stay connected to people even when they are far away! Enjoy our Guide for great ways to stay connected and social using virtual technology.
Connect via video chat
What’s the point of going online if you have a telephone and know how to use that? Well, the best part of all is that you can see people! People can show you what they are doing, and you get to see their laughter and their reactions. The telephone is a great resource, but especially when you miss seeing people, it’s nice to connect with them virtually anywhere with video.
Here are some of the more popular video platforms:
- Zoom - This is often used for businesses and has the advantage of being able to host up to 100 people depending on the plan you have with them, though one-on-one conversations are almost always free. Another advantage is that this works no matter what device you have! (Want to learn more? Take Get Started with Zoom This Holiday Season to learn the basics.)
- Facetime - This is an Apple-specific tool. It works great if everyone you want to talk to has an Apple device. But, it isn't possible to use on an Android device, so you're limited to who you can talk to based on their technology..
- Google Meets - If you have a google account (which is free), you can sign up for this and speak with anyone else with a google account. These services are free and can host up to 100 people. (Already have a google account? Learn how to use Google Meets with it!)
- WhatsApp - This is a phone app that works on both Apple and Android devices. While this app is not as common in the US, it is very popular in other countries and a great way to speak to friends or family who live in different countries without incurring extra costs. It is free to text, send pictures, and have video calls. However, group calls are limited to eight people. (Learn more about how to connect globally with friends on WhatsApp.)
Online discussions and social activities
Now that you have your platform of choice for social engagements organized, start to use it! Organize events for your friends and family or join those already set up.
- Organize a weekly meal- Pick a lunch, dinner, or breakfast to regularly chat with friends and family. Cook the same recipe together and see whose looks better, or each makes your own recipe and compare. Check out this list of over 80 meals to cook together on Zoom if you need inspiration or take a class to learn new recipes.
- Plan a dance party — Set up a theme — Disco Friday, Ballroom Wednesday, or Line Dancing Sunday and invite your participants to dance together live. Set up a playlist you can all listen to together on Spotify or Google Music. Love to dance, but need to meet other like-minded individuals? Join a virtual dance party from one of the many hosted on Eventbrite or learn the line dance - the Hustle.
- Poetry circle - Get together to share poetry you wrote or a favorite poem from your favorite authors. Add to the event by making it interactive as participants become poets by creating Magnetic Poetry online then sharing results.
- Book Club — Nothing is quite like reading and sharing a great discussion over a book you have strong feelings about! Find your favorite readers and band together to form a book club and choose your book. If you need inspiration check out these great suggestions. You can help keep the club on track and meet weekly with chapter goals!
Want to expand to a larger audience? GetSetUp is happy to host your discussion topic on our platform with tech support. Contact us to learn more about opportunities to host your online discussions on the GetSetUp platform.
More and more people are joining together remotely to play games together online. You can invite friends and family you already know or find groups online and join in the fun. If your friends and family don’t share your game tastes, why not host a game on GetSetUp to find other like-minded individuals? We can be your tech support and with our community of over 150,000 learners, you can likely find other people who share similar interests.
- Bingo — Bingo is the classic game of gatherings, and now you can play it virtually. Make your own BINGO. Then play with your bingo crowd to see who wins. Each member can create their own Bingo game card so you can switch throughout the evening.
- Pictionary — Bring out your drawing arm and creativity with Pictionary online by using Skribbl.io . Here you can play with Pictionary fans already online or create your own private room where you can invite your favorite Pictionary players.
- Trivia — Gather your favorite trivia enthusiasts to play Trivia together! Now you can play online with random trivia generated questions.
- Play Video Games — Video game live with friends or family or check out new games on Twitch. Fall Guys is one fun game where players of varying levels can play from their laptop or tablet together.
- Classic Games - There are tons of classic games online too from chess to cards and Scrabble. Many of these offer ways to play live online or as each person has time, so you can connect with loved ones who may be busy and also play live as time permits. (Want to learn more about games in general? Join playing Brain Games to find out many more fun great games.)
If you are looking to meet new people one of the best ways to do that whether in person or online is to take a class! Nothing brings people together like learning about a shared interest.
- GetSetUp - Offers fun interactive live classes where retired professionals teach their peers on topics ranging from technology to health and well-being. You can keep coming back to the same class, join a social hour to chat, or put into practice new skills. Classes are engaging and just an hour-long so easily fit into any schedule.
- Learn A Language- Consider finally learning a language that you are interested in, whether that’s taking group classes online or one-on-one classes. Great apps like Duolingo let you connect with other learners through fun games and challenges to foster learning.
- TED Talks - These short videos offer a lot of learning opportunities on different topics. Many topics also have communities that link with them or you can join to talk more about the topic. Be sure to check out the comments to see how to effectively apply what new things you learn.
- Certification Classes - If you are looking to really advance your skills or gain deep knowledge of topics, taking a certified course could help you gain new professional skills. There are a lot of online universities and courses that cover a wide range of topics from philosophy to teaching. Consider enrolling full-time or part-time as a student and come away with expert knowledge in an area you have always wanted to study.
So what are you waiting for? It’s time to get more connected virtually with friends and family! Plus now it's easy to reach out and find a virtual community that you can share interests with from learning to films, book club, or just some fun social chats over a nice drink.
We look forward to sharing new mini-guides with you as we move into the winter months ahead. You may be at home but you will be learning to make the most of your time at home!
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