In a recent survey by Boston University, half of U.S. adults surveyed reported at least some signs of depression, such as hopelessness, feeling like a failure or getting little pleasure from doing things. That’s double the rate from a previous survey two years ago. There is no question that the pandemic has taken a toll on many people’s mental state. People are finding creative ways to combat these feelings including cow hugging and co-living.
In the Netherlands, an activity called koe knuffelen in Dutch is becoming internationally popular. The activity which translates literally to “hugging cow” in English is exactly what it says it is. To relax, visitors are touring farms and spending hours hugging, cuddling, and hanging out with cattle in efforts to stimulate the release of hormones you experience during social bonding. The new trend has expanded to the U.S. and Switzerland.
Zoom has helped us all collaborate in work environments, but can a Zoom date really replace a dinner date? FaceTime has helped us not waste time on getting to know people we don’t like, according to an article in The Atlantic. The chance meeting of someone out at a bar or a party has now been replaced with scrolling and swiping through dating apps.
No one wants to be alone. Those that have moved to new cities are especially vulnerable to signs of depression if they have limited social interactions and haven’t had the opportunity to learn the city or make friends. The need to feel a part of a community is what has fueled the interest in co-living. Some renters sought out Quarters apartments to share with friends so they wouldn’t feel so lonely in their private apartments. Some current Quarters members extended their leases to have access to their newly minted community in fear that lockdowns may resume. Our virtual events and community app makes it easier to find things to do around the neighborhood and city and, possibly, people to experience the city with.
Quarters will continue to expand in key cities to offer community, connectivity and cost-efficient housing and will take precautions to help keep buildings clean and members healthy. There are social distancing guidelines in place and all members are encouraged to wear face masks appropriately. There are still opportunities for members the chance to co-mingle virtually or at a distance, share ideas, and make new friends. Some quality time on a farm couldn’t hurt either.