During this unprecedented time of social isolation, it has become much easier for many of us to lose connection with others because the ways we normally connect are not as accessible. You may have noticed your mood is typically lower than usual. You may have felt less motivated towards areas of interest that you typically have. Though social distancing is important during this time, have you found yourself isolating from others a bit more than expected? Indeed, have you noticed this happen to some of the people around you?

A mental health initiative called “Shall We Talk” by the Hong Kong Government has been addressing this idea of normalizing mental health and there is no better time for it than during a pandemic. Even pre-pandemic “A local survey conducted in 2019 showed that more than half of respondents aged between 12 and 75 rated their mental health as fair or very poor/poor in the past six months, and about 8% of the respondents experienced severe psychological distress in the past one month. It is very common for most of us to face mental health challenges at some point in our life so no one can disregard it.”

One way to work through this is to intentionally address the way that we demonstrate care for others. Dr. Gary Chapman wrote the book “The 5 Love Languages” in hopes of being able to help people communicate the level of care that they feel for those around them, more effectively.

“You love each other, right? So why does it feel like you’re not on the same page? The most common issue in any relationship is the communication barrier. Everyone experiences love differently, and it’s easy to miss the mark when it comes to showing that you care. With a little help from The 5 Love Languages®, you can learn to identify the root of your conflicts, give and receive love in more meaningful ways, and grow closer than ever. Your Love Language profile will explain your primary love language, what it means, and how you can use it to connect to others.”

With social distancing (hopefully) now easing up, my hope is that this task becomes all the easier to implement among friends and family who may be needing that extra bit of care in their lives, after what has been a period of ups and downs globally. Let’s use this Spring Break to reach out to those around us a bit more intentionally.