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These social self-care activities are a great way to feel fulfilled and happy while spending time with others 

You may already know that self-care is all about taking care of yourself by recharging your batteries but do you know it goes beyond solo activities like taking a bubble bath or meditating?

There are actually 7 different types of self-care but today we’re focusing on social self-care.

As humans, we are social beings so interacting with people can be a form of self-care because it aligns with our natural instincts. After all, back in the caveman days, you needed to be a part of a tribe for survival and even though we are no longer running for our lives, social interactions are still an important part of our overall wellbeing. 

When we have good relationships with others we develop close connections that fill our cup in a way that we can’t do alone.

What is social self-care?

From Nalanda Ray and Anindita Majumdar’s book Social Self-Care: The Necessity of Turning Outward, social self-care is defined as “the act of taking care of one’s own wellbeing through maintaining positive social relationships and by establishing meaningful connections and developing one’s social identity.”

But what if you’re introverted?

The idea of social self-care may seem more well-suited for extroverts since they regain energy from socializing but it is important for introverts to include social self-care into their routines as well. 

Because while introverts enjoy alone time and looking inward, nurturing social connections is equally crucial for their well-being.

For introverts, it’s all about quality over quantity regarding social self-care. So while you may not be interested in a large gathering like extroverts, you probably enjoy having one-on-one conversations with others. After all, everyone enjoys being around the people that they love and care about, it just may vary on how much time. 

Benefits of incorporating social self-care for introverts

If you’re still not convinced that you need people in your life, here are a few of the benefits of social self-care:

1. Reduces stress

Sometimes it is good to get outside of your own mind and talk it out with someone you trust. Whether that is venting or just figuring out a difficult situation, social self-care can help navigate those negative emotions.

Or on the flip side, social interactions can be a good way to have fun, relax, and improve your quality of life. 

2. Improves your physical and mental well-being

According to multiple studies, the people with the fewest relationships didn’t live as long as their social counterparts. Now this doesn’t mean you should talk to toxic people just to talk to someone because the quality of the relationship does matter but having strong relationships and interacting with others does lead to a healthier and happier life. 

Because remember, we are social beings so we need to connect with others but it’s up to you to decide how many others you wish to interact with on a regular basis.

3. Reduces feelings of isolation and loneliness 

While introverts cherish their alone time, too much isolation can lead to feelings of loneliness and disconnect. Despite our inclination towards solitude, introverts benefit greatly from social interaction. 

Even though I’m introverted, I love spending time with friends, family, and my husband because I need that connection with others.

Meaningful connections contribute to a sense of belonging, support, and understanding. Engaging in social self-care helps introverts tap into these benefits without compromising their need for personal space.

4. Building Authentic Connections

Introverts often thrive in deeper, more authentic relationships. Social self-care encourages introverts to focus on building connections that align with their values and interests. This might involve seeking out like-minded individuals or participating in activities that resonate with their passions.

Incorporating social self-care into their routine allows introverts to honor their need for solitude while nurturing valuable connections. 

Ways to incorporate self-care into your routine

Not all social self-care activities are created equal. Here is what I would consider when thinking of social self-care ideas. 

Face-to-face time or online?

It’s important to ask yourself how would you like to spend your time with others.

When you think of socializing, you are probably thinking of activities like going out to dinner with friends, playing a team sport, or joining a local club in your community but social self-care doesn’t necessarily have to be face-to-face. 

If you’re someone who doesn’t like to leave their house or you don’t know that many people in your area, an online option may be best. The internet has made it easier than ever before to stay connected with others from all over the world.

You can still reap the benefits of social self-care by chatting with loved ones over video calls, joining an online community of individuals with similar interests, or even playing video games with others online. 

The different activities are endless. 

Being present

The most important thing to do is to focus on the person you’re spending time with. We’re all guilty of being on our phones but if you’re distracted, you aren’t going to build that connection that you’re craving. 

This is something I’ve been trying to be intentional with in my daily life in everything that I do, not just socializing with others but that is a great place to start.

Schedule it

To make sure you actually include these social activities into your routine on a regular basis, try scheduling them into your calendar. It doesn’t have to be a part of your daily routine, the amount of socializing that you need is going to be different for everyone. 

Once you know how much socializing you need vs alone time, try to schedule the different types of self-care into your calendar and set boundaries around it.

It doesn’t have to be time-consuming. It could be as simple as calling a close friend on your lunch break but try to have it on your calendar so you actually do it. 

Evaluate your relationships

Next, you want to spend time with people that energize you. I know as introverts we can experience the introvert hangover even if we’re spending time with people we love but it is important to check in with yourself regarding your relationships. 

Ask yourself who lifts you up and supports you. 

Think of some healthy relationships in your life and if there are any that are not serving you. Then spend more time with people who are lighting you up. 

Your time is precious so spend your quality time with people who make you feel whole.  

Creating Comfortable Social Spaces

Lastly, creating comfortable social spaces is key, especially for introverts. While it’s important to get outside your comfort zone, from a self-care perspective you want to feel safe. 

Whether hosting small gatherings, attending intimate events, or engaging in one-on-one conversations, curating environments that feel good and nurturing is vital. These settings allow you to express yourself authentically without feeling overwhelmed.

47 Social Self-Care Ideas for Cultivating Meaningful Connections

In our busy lives, tending to our social well-being is just as crucial as taking care of our physical and mental health. Social self-care involves nurturing our relationships, building connections, and enriching our social identity.

Here are 47 ideas to help you add social self-care into your routine:

1. Host a themed dinner party

Invite friends over for a themed night filled with good food and great conversations. It could be a cultural cuisine night, foods that fit the season, or even non-food related like a costume-themed dinner.

2. Attend a local meetup

Explore groups or gatherings based on your interests through websites like Meetup.com. It’s a fantastic way to meet like-minded individuals especially if you’re new to town.

3. Organize a book club

Start a book club (or find one!) to engage in stimulating discussions and connect with others over a good book.

4. Volunteer in your community 

Find local volunteer opportunities that align with your passions. It’s a chance to meet new people while making a positive impact.

5. Join a sports team

Whether it’s a casual weekend team or a more competitive league, sports offer a fantastic way to bond and stay active.

6. Attend workshops

Enroll in workshops that interest you—be it cooking, painting, or coding—where you can mingle with others and bond over your newly learned skill.

7. Host a game night

Gather friends for a night of board games, card games, or even video games.

8. Find a TV show to watch together

One of the best parts about watching reality TV is when I get to talk about it with my family or friends. My mom, sisters and I love the Bachelor franchise and I love being able to talk about it with them.

9. Chat with your Neighbors

Talking to the people in your neighborhood is a great way to build a sense of community in your backyard and it doesn’t hurt to have a friendly relationship with the people who live around you. 

10. Reach out to an old friend

Take time to reconnect with old friends you’ve lost touch with. A simple message or call can reignite or deepen meaningful connections.

11. Plan a picnic

A little fresh air never hurts anyone so enjoy the outdoors with friends or family. Pack some snacks and head to a park for a relaxed and enjoyable day. 

12. Join an online community 

Engage in online communities related to your interests. Social media has made it really easy to find people who have similar interests as you. 

13. Talk to the people you see regularly

This could be the barista at your favorite coffee shop or other people in the dog park if you have a dog. 

14. Attend networking events

Networking events offer opportunities to meet new people and expand your circle.

15. Take a class together

Enroll in a course with a friend or partner. It could even be an online course as long as you still do it together! Learning something new side by side can deepen your connection.

16. Talk to people on social media

Beyond communities, meeting individuals on social media is a way to form a connection with people near and far away.

17. Call a loved one

This is a simple way to enforce the connections you already have. So think of a family member or close friend who would love to chat and give them a ring. 

18. Get a mani-pedi with your sister or a friend

A Mani-pedi is part of many women’s self-care practices. So check off a personal self-care activity and a social self-care activity by pampering yourself with a friend. Going to the salon with a friend always makes it more fun and you can help each other pick out what color you want! 

19. Host a DIY or craft party

Share your skills by organizing a DIY or crafting get-together. It’s a great way to bond while creating something new together.

20. Attend live performances

Enjoy concerts, theater shows, or stand-up comedy gigs with friends. Shared experiences create lasting memories.

21. Go to the gym with a friend

If you’re looking for ways to improve your physical health, you could lift weights together or join a Zumba class together and motivate each other to get fit, lift heavier, and talk about your excellent dance moves. It’s a great way to take care of your body and build your close relationships. 

22. Schedule regular friend dates

Set aside dedicated time in your schedule for one-on-one meetups with friends to nurture individual connections. I always feel great after a dinner date with my girlfriends so this is a type of self-care I’ll gladly participate in. 

23. Participate in a charity event

Join charity runs, walks, or fundraising events. It’s an opportunity to connect with a cause and with different people who care about the same cause as you do.

24. Spend some time with your pet

You don’t necessarily need to socialize with another human. Spend some time throwing a ball around with your dog and chilling with your cat. 

25. Go to Top Golf, Ice Skating, bowling, a bike ride… with friends

If you’re looking for other things to do other than dinner, why not do something active with your friends? It’s great for your overall health and an easy way to make plans with others.

26. Organize a group trip

Plan a getaway with friends or family. Traveling together strengthens bonds and creates unforgettable experiences.

27. Learn a new language with others

Connect with others looking to learn a new language. The best way to learn a new language is by practicing with others!

28. Host a movie marathon

Invite friends over for a movie marathon featuring everyone’s favorite films or a themed series.

29. Create a vision board party

Gather friends to create vision boards filled with dreams, goals, and aspirations. It’s a creative and inspiring way to bond.

30. Join a hobby-related community

There are clubs for everything including non-sports-related hobby communities. Croqueting, painting, and blogging communities to name a few so search for one of your hobbies and see what is out there.

31. Attend a retreat

Join a retreat focused on personal development, wellness, or mindfulness. It’s an immersive way to connect with yourself and others.

32. Start a podcast or vlog

Collaborate with friends by starting a podcast or vlog where you discuss shared interests or experiences.

33. Join a support group

If there is something that you’re struggling with my heart goes out to you but finding a group who is going through the same thing can build deep connections and reduce feelings of loneliness. 

34. Go out and find the perfect gift for a loved one (then go give it to them)

Finding the perfect gift for someone is priceless. While we often do this around the holidays and people’s birthdays, why not give them the gift now if you find the perfect gift while out and about? 

35. Join a mentorship program

Engage in mentorship, either as a mentor or mentee, to connect and learn from others.

36. Organize your social media

Unfollowing people who are toxic or make you feel bad about yourself is a great way to make social media a powerful tool that works in your favor. 

Go through your friend lists or the people you follow and decide if they bring you joy or not. 

37. Participate in online challenges

Engage in social media challenges or online events with friends or online communities.

38. Start a gratitude circle

Create a regular gathering to share moments of gratitude, promoting positivity and connection.

39. Engage in random acts of kindness

Perform acts of kindness individually or with friends, spreading positivity and fostering a sense of community.

40. Go for a Walk or a Hike

Gather friends to spend some time in nature and go for a walk. It’s a great way to get in your steps and have a good chat.

41. Start a digital detox challenge

Encourage friends to participate in a weekend-long digital detox where you disconnect from screens and reconnect with each other in person.

42. Host a storytelling night

Invite friends over for an evening dedicated to sharing personal stories or experiences. It’s a beautiful way to deepen connections and foster empathy.

43. Join a committee at work

There are a lot of different committees or groups that you can join and get involved with your colleagues. It’s a great way to network and it looks good on your resume too so it’s a win-win.

44. Organize a group art project

Collaborate on an art project where everyone contributes a piece, creating a collective masterpiece and bonding through creativity.

45. Attend a local farmers’ market

Visit farmers’ markets with friends, exploring local produce and supporting small businesses while enjoying each other’s company.

46. go to Trivia or Bingo Night at your local bar

A lot of bars do trivia, music bingo, or other fun games on weeknights to get more people into the door. I love going with friends (even just one friend) and playing along. It gets you out of the house and is an interactive way to spend your evening.

47. Create a Recipe Book with your friends

My friend group recently started doing this and it has been so much fun to get together and make new recipes! We’re also compiling the recipes that we all cooked so we have them. It’s a delightful way to bond over food and memories.

Final thoughts

And there you have it. There are many more ideas that are not included on this list but hopefully, you got some inspiration! Finding the right social self-care activity is key just like all the other types of self-care. What works for me may not work for you and that’s okay!

You’ll find your tribe of individuals and start reaping the benefits in no time!

Caring for our social well-being is an ongoing process that involves intentional efforts to nurture connections and cultivate a sense of community.

These are just some of the many different ideas you can do to improve your connections with others and fill your social cup.

Until next time,

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