With the availability of vaccines increasing worldwide, more people will be open to going back to their old social habits. The truth is that the transition from isolation to socialization can actually be very draining. It is important to remember that feeling emotionally drained when transitioning back to socialization is normal as we are so used to the way things have been for the past year.

Socialization Overstimulation

After a year of being at home by yourself, socializing at a friend’s house or in public can feel overwhelming with the dramatic change in scenery. Reintroducing the sights, smells, and surroundings can be a lot to process. If you are very overwhelmed by something as simple as grabbing a coffee, give yourself a break. You are working hard to take it all in and make sense of everything around you. It may take a while for your energy to go back up when you are venturing outside of your house. We need to teach ourselves how to socialize again while also making sure we are reconnecting with each other safely.

Juggling the COVID Comfort of Others

Maybe you used to be quick to hug people you know and shake hands with those you do not. The pandemic made us more cautious about touching others. Even if everyone you are with is fully vaccinated, some might still be uncomfortable with close contact. Your anxiety levels might raise in being cautious at what the people around you are comfortable with. Hangouts are now determined by the comfort level of others which can be very hard to handle. You are constantly asking yourself what is okay, and your brain gets tired of asking these questions because you can never be too sure.

How to Socialize After COVID

If it is safe for you to have in-person interactions, you can slowly ease yourself back into them. Social anxiety is very normal, and some people need more time to adjust than others. Find a balance between your social life and your home life. Take notice if you are feeling exhaustion as a result of being back in your social life. If you do, take a breather or head home. If you are more satisfied with spending more nights at home than before, do not be hard on yourself. Be open and honest about your social anxiety and only do what makes you comfortable.

While we all want to return to normal as the pandemic eases, it is sometimes easier said than done. Our anxiety levels and mental exhaustion increases as we are being cautious of people’s comfort levels. Do not let your anxiety make you feel hard on yourself for not being quick to jump back into socialization. At Alta Loma, we understand the struggles of anxiety and are here to make things easier for you. We have the tools you need for successful treatment, such as individualized therapy, therapeutic recreational activities, medication management, and more. Please call (866) 457-3843 for more information.