We may have been told to stay at home and in isolation but that doesn’t stop us from having meaningful connections with other people. We have the advantage of technology and this will allow us to keep in touch with and have fun with friends and family.

Here we have some suggestions for ways you can keep in touch with loved ones during lockdown and we show you how you can do it.

Organise a games night

On Houseparty – the worlds new favourite app to stay connected- there are games such as ‘Heads Up’, ‘Trivia’ and ‘Quick Draw!’ already built in so you can video call (up to 8 friends at a time) and start playing! On ‘Heads Up’ you can play the #trending deck for free but if you’re likely to get a lot of use of it, you can buy other decks from 99p. Send round a group invitation to ‘meet-up’ grab a glass of wine and you’re guaranteed to have a night of laughs.

On Zoom – a video conferencing system, mostly used in businesses, similar to Skype or Lync- you can easily share your PC screen with multiple people you’re on a video call with which allows for social gaming. The free version is restricted to 40-minute sessions, so be prepared to get cut off, or for £11.99 (per month), sessions can last up to 24 hours. Once loaded, and you’ve shared a meeting invite (code and pin), and your party is ready, you simply click the ‘share screen’ button.

Video conference with your friends
Ideas for ‘video’ games

With this, you can use paint to have rounds of Pictionary, play charades or install a gaming platform, such as Steam,  which allows you to play a huge library of games (ranging from classic games to recent launches) from your PC.  We recommend Jackbox as a multi-player experience, with multiple games, as you can use your mobile phone as controllers. You can currently try one of the Jackbox games, Drawful 2, for free!

Create group chats

We may need to talk more than ever so if you’ve not yet set up a group chat with friends get to it. Share what’s keeping you entertained, share your gripes of the day, tell jokes, share weird pictures, be sure to stay connected and keep each other grounded and feeling sane.

Check in with people

If you’ve not heard from someone in a little while or they don’t seem to be posting on social, or engaging in any of the conversations, be sure to check in with them and see how they’re doing. They may not be coping very well and just waiting for someone to reach out to them. It’s also just generally a really weird time and we could all do with that human connection.

Send letters

Send a letter to a loved one

This is a good opportunity for us to practise our writing skills and nothing is more pleasing than receiving a hand-written note in the post. If you’re avoiding the post office, you don’t need to worry, you can organise postage online and then just drop it into your nearest post box. It’ll also force you to go and get some fresh air as you’ll need to go to the post box to send it. No doubt the personal touch will be very much appreciated.

Don’t forget birthdays and special occasions

Just because you can’t see them, doesn’t mean you should forget them. If a friend is due to celebrate their birthday during lockdown or isolation, be sure to organise getting a card and gift to them (if you normally would). Most online retailers are still operating so there really is no excuse to miss their special occasion, especially when they won’t feel like there is much there to celebrate. Having a good friend miss or not acknowledge their birthday in the usual way because they can’t see them will be really hurtful.

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