I’m just not getting it.
Everyone, from the highest heads of states and global organisations, to our families are telling us to stay home. It is one cohesive instruction. And anybody with a bit of sense is LISTENING and doing just that – we are staying home unless we are essential to the basic needs of our society.
At the same time, we have our mental health to take care of. Being social animals, human beings need to connect to the other human beings we trust, love and respect, so that we can feel good, learn better and be functional.
Just in case we have forgotten, the word ‘social’ means: ‘relating to society’ or ‘the organisation of society’. It also means ‘needing companionship’ or ‘relating to activities in which you meet and spend time with other people’. Related words are ‘communal’, ‘community’, ‘collective’, ‘civic’ and ‘civil’.
And ‘social’ comes from the Latin for ‘friend’.
So why is ‘social distancing’ protecting us from the scourge of this virus? It’s not – it is PHYSICAL distancing that is. A distance of at least 2m between me and you, will discourage the spread of this contagious disease for all the reasons we’ve read about and know. (Not minimising hand washing, staying home and other good practices).
We’ve all seen the lengths that people are going to in order to connect to each other – I can’t watch another clip of somebody singing from a balcony, can you?! Lol! This is all about ubuntu, encouragement, support – the individual’s impact the collective and vice versa: keeping ‘society’ healthy as a whole will impact on each and every one of us. Everywhere!
What we need right now is social COHESION – so that we ALL stay at home and so that we connect to our loved ones in intentional and meaningful ways.
Let’s change the term.