Office of Student Life

Counseling and Consultation Service

Social Connection and Belonging During COVID

It’s been almost a year now since we’ve had some level of social distancing in place to keep us all safe. Students have had a range of reactions and it is understandable that we’re missing each other. Connection, belonging, and togetherness are vital for positive mental health. When we feel lonely or isolated it sends a message internally that we’re not OK. Typically, the feeling of loneliness should act as a guidepost prompting us to reach out and connect with others. It’s not as easy to connect as before while physically distanced.  

We know there has been an impact on students across the country. A survey conducted by Active Minds reports that 80% of college students say loneliness or isolation during COVID-19 has negatively impacted their mental health. If you have been feeling lonely, ironically it may also be uncomfortable as you reach out. You may worry “what if I’m not accepted” or “will people really get me?” That is to be expected. Be uncomfortable, but reach out anyway! It may feel strange, awkward or weird. However, there are many ways to get started. Everyone’s reason for feeling disconnected will be a little different therefore each solution will look a little different. However, what is required in each case is a little courage to help the natural anxiety that comes with taking a chance on connecting. Stay persistent. Don’t get discouraged. The first step is yours to take!

Here are a few things to help:

  1. Attend a workshop.

    Connecting and Belonging During COVID
    Wednesdays, 3 - 4 p.m.
    Drop in using this link

    Many of us are having trouble connecting to others and managing stress during COVID and physical distancing. This workshop is intended to introduce skills to manage emotional and stress related responses to social isolation from COVID. We’ll also explore interpersonal skills to assist in building connections and identify resources for additional support.

  2. Try the Spring RECESS Challenge

    Stuck inside? Sick of doing everything online? You deserve an extra period for RECESS! Find your team, your friends and get to know your classmates. There are thousands of Buckeyes out there, it’s just been harder to find them during this period of necessary precautions associated with COVID-19. Find the antidote to loneliness though the ten challenges on our RECESS page.

  3. Check out this inspirational video from Active Minds.