Group Video Chat

Simple Ways To Keep Yourself Engaged During The Covid-19 Lockdown

With COVID-19 cases increasing exponentially and the whole world going into lockdown, it now seems like self-quarantine is the new norm. For most, the lines of professional and personal spaces are blurring as ‘work from home’ approaches gain momentum. Kids are also getting a taste of their future as online classes become ubiquitous. However, the adjustment can be difficult and with a lack of routine, it’s often hard to follow timelines. This can lead people to a sense of frustration and despondency. Additionally, being confined in a closed space with no option of getting out is annoying at best. This is not the time to let yourself be swayed by negative feelings; instead, one needs to use the time productively. Here are some ways in which you can keep yourself and your loved ones engaged constructively.

  1. Stay virtually connected through video chat

With travel completely prohibited or greatly restricted for most people right now, it’s tough to reach out to family and friends. Thanks to technology, though, there are ways to be in touch with them. Virtual connection using video chat is one strategy to be close to your near and dear ones. With it, you can not only talk to your family and friends but also see them in close-to-real time. Visual contact helps alleviate bad moods, bring people closer, and relieve concerns. Video chatting portals like Camfrog offer seamless video chat options to link you with both known and unknown people.

If you are feeling lonely during this self-quarantine phase and want to make new friends, just sign up on any of these video chat platforms and find like-minded people. All you have to do is download the app, create a profile, set your filters and start looking. Just ensure that you have a good internet connection with decent speed and a smart gadget to download the program.

These video chat platforms are some of the best ways to keep boredom at bay. Connecting with people to discuss your worries and woes can also be a way to deal with all the stress surrounding the pandemic. You can use it to have stimulating conversations. Additionally, platforms like Camfrog offer public chat rooms that you can join to connect with many new people at one time. These platforms are an excellent place to have interesting debates and discussions; and share images, videos and audio, making conversations feel more like they are face-to-face.

  1. Read to your heart’s content

Quite often, we are so engrossed in our daily routine of managing our jobs, homes, and families that we forget to have a good time. However, owing to the coronavirus pandemic, most people are locked down in their homes. With nowhere to go and no social obligations to follow, you can take time out for yourself and spend it in the company of books, something you may not have found time for in a while.

If you are an avid reader, get all your books off their dusty shelves and read to your heart’s content. Those of you new to reading will find that the internet is filled with endless good option, with both physical and digital copies. Just pick one that catches your eye and get started. Choose an ebook or audiobook and you don’t even have to find shelf space to store them!

  1. Watch your favourite shows on Netflix

Make use of technology and stream your favorite shows on Netflix. You can pick your favorite show or movie from a variety of genres and indulge in some binge-watching with a bowl of popcorn as company.

Remember, these days of not having too much to do will not last forever, so make the most of it. If you do not have Netflix, the internet is full of sources to find films and watch them with your family. In fact, you can plan your weekends with back-to-back shows or have a movie marathon with some delectable home-cooked food. With proper lighting and setting, it can give you the feel of sitting in a movie hall.

  1. Attend virtual events

During normal times, it can be tough to accommodate events in your busy schedule, but thanks to home quarantine, you have the opportunity to attend different virtual events organized by friends, brands, and bands you love. In fact, due to the present condition, many interesting webinars and workshops are being conducted online to keep people productive. You can attend cooking classes, join an art workshop, or enroll for meditation sessions without having to worry about the logistics of a physical space. Simply sit in the comfort of your home and slot in time to attend any interesting and intellectually stimulating workshops you discover. You will not regret it!

  1. Join online hobby classes

We all have hobbies that we have tried to nurture before starting our professional lives, but owing to our work schedules and home commitments we often forget about them. Now that you are at home with no office to go to, it is a good time to get back to that hobby and pursue it. So pick up your old guitar, tune it and join some online guitar lessons to hone your skills, or indulge in candle making or photography lessons. There are innumerable choices available through online platforms like Udemy, Coursera, edX, etc with both paid and free options. All you need to do is pick your favorite and start immediately.

  1. Revisit shelved projects/plans

Take out that unfinished project that you once started with all enthusiasm but could never complete because of paucity of time. Finish writing that book you began years ago and finally get it published. Add another feather to your cap by revitalizing an old piece of furniture. Anything works, we promise. And don’t forget the immense satisfaction you’ll feel after finishing with something you had left halfway done!

  1. Network

With social distancing, people are spending a great deal of time on varied social media platforms like Instagram, LinkedIn, Facebook, and others. Take advantage of this and use it to build contacts. Create new accounts if you don’t have them already and make your social media presence stronger. A lot of people are taking to the virtual medium to spread awareness about COVID-19 best practices and are using this medium to expand their platforms. You can also use it to reach out to people from your professional field and create a network. Who knows, it might help later on in bagging some good projects!

  1. Indulge in cooking

It is said that cooking is therapeutic, so why not use the time in self-quarantine to learn some new dishes or cuisines? Revisit those cook books you bought years ago but never found time to actually experiment with. Many online platforms are offering cooking courses at discounted prices at the moment, so enroll in them or simply download the recipes from the internet. You could even plan a candlelight dinner with something exquisite right at home and give your family another reason to smile during this challenging time. Try making cooking a family activity and include your partner and children in your culinary experiments. Not only will they learn something new, it will be a great way to spend time together as a family. From simple homemade cakes to delicious pasta and pizzas, home cooking can be a lot of fun.

  1. Bond with family

Very often, we get so engrossed in our busy work life that we forget to take time out for our loved ones. Even home commitments can be too many to really enjoy time with family. Now that work is going at a slower pace and there are no meetings to rush to or air travel to catch, it is an excellent time to bond with family. Do activities as a family and make this time in quarantine count. Indulge in board games, cook with your kids and have a picnic in your backyard, start some DIY projects involving all members of the family, or simply watch a movie together. There is a plethora of options that you can explore to come together as a family.

  1. Exercise the bad feelings out

When you exercise, you release happiness hormones, so why not get rid of all the negativity, lethargy, and boredom with some workout routines. You might not be able to go out for walks or runs in the park or even attend your favorite yoga class, but as they say, where there is a will, there is a way.

Many experts have started online workout sessions at discounted prices— from yoga and pilates to Zumba and many others. Pick your favorite and enroll for a class right away. You can also download a good workout routine from Pinterest or any other online portal and do a mix of exercises. Select a new form daily. It will add to the novelty and also keep you motivated. You could also have a group workout session with your friends through online video chat platforms like Camfrog. It will give you that much needed motivation to push your limits and keep at it day after day while simultaneously making the workout session all the more fun.

  1. Dance away your blues

Dancing is an excellent way to boost your mood. Not only does it help overcome your worries, but it also sets the course for the coming few days. You can play your favorite songs and dance away your blues all by yourself for that endorphin rush, or get your family to join in and make it a fun family activity.

You could also enroll in an online dance class and learn a new form of dance. You can even get your spouse to be your partner and make the most of your time together. Any of the latin dances like the salsa, tango, or even the jive is great couples dances to learn. They are easy and fun. Moreover, in the bargain you could lose some weight and also learn a new skill!

  1. Organize and clean

If you have been waiting for one free weekend in the past few months to clear all your cupboards and re-organize them, but haven’t found the time to do so, now is that time. Go room by room and clear out all the junk that has been stacked away in lofts and shelves forever, clean the cupboards, and throw out old stuff that has been lingering. Clearing out clutter is also therapeutic. You can get your kids and partner to help you too.

Once you have cleaned out the rooms, you can take on rearranging household items like sofas, chairs, television, showpieces and others to give your home a makeover and a fresh new look without buying a thing.

  1. Indulge in gardening

Being one with nature is a great stress buster. Give some time to your lawn. Trim the hedges, weed the grass, plant new flowers, or re-arrange your existing pots. Get your children to help you with this activity. Not only will they learn something new but they will also understand the importance of nature. It is a great family activity.

If you have any garden books, now is the time they can come in handy. If not, the internet can be your best friend. There are a lot of easy-to-do videos to manage lawns on YouTube. Learn from them and apply that learning to your soon to be luscious garden.

With so many things to do, you are sure to find one that keeps you occupied in a productive manner. However, when all is said and done, don’t feel pressured to be productive. In the words of Fay Lin, a mental health advocate, “It is okay to struggle with productivity, mourn the experiences that were canceled due to social distancing, and feel anxious about the uncertainty.” Use this time to hit the reset button on your life. Long working hours, late nights, unending travel commitments, missed deadlines, working weekends, and boring social obligations: your life has probably been a mix of all these things since your career began. Now that you have the time, why not take a break? Focus on yourself and your loved ones, consciously practice self-care, video chat with friends — consider this a time to rejuvenate and recharge yourself.

Camfrog Chat

How to Meet New People and Talk to Strangers Online

In today’s fast paced technically driven world, physical proximity to loved ones is a luxury. Our focus on goals and other aspects of everyday life can distract us or make it difficult to find time with friends. Furthermore, with gadgets now ruling a large part of our time, people often feel more comfortable talking on the phone or online rather than meeting in person. This is a factor of both comfort and efficiency.

Dr. Abraham Maslow’s study on the hierarchy of human needs have shown that humans socialize because they need to belong somewhere. We need friends to talk to and compare ideas against. And yet, we can’t always reach out to our old trusted friends, not because of distance but as a result of other challenges technology can’t solve. Time-zones can wreak havoc with long-distance relationships, be it friendship or romance, and can damage them with time.

Sometimes we just need to talk. It doesn’t matter who we are talking to as long as we can share our feelings and feel heard and validated. After all, a stranger is only a friend you haven’t met yet! Being social does not necessarily mean you have to be very close friends. It means being comfortable opening up to somebody in order to spend time with them. To balance work pressure and myriad other social and economic pressures, it is important that we talk to people we trust. Meeting new people can also make that process exciting, as we learn new things from each person we come across.

If you have just left your friend behind in your home city or you have walked out of a troubled friendship and want to talk through it, an accessible and straightforward option is to make new friends using technology and social media platforms. There are so many strangers out there who could be waiting to talk to and listen to you. What’s more, you have the option to remain faceless and anonymous to share all you want without being judged!

Here are a few tips on how to meet new people and talk to strangers online:

  • Look for the most feasible, safest networking platforms

Social networking is the order of the day and since our lives are now more device-driven than they’ve ever been, it has become easier to connect with more people, including old friends as well as strangers.  If we need to meet new people, why not use the time we’re already spending on social networking sites?  It’s important to be careful, as cybercrimes are on the rise, so when you choose your online platform, look for one that is popular, paid, and enjoys a good reputation for safety. These sites can connect us with old friends and new people who might become friends or confidantes in the future.

  • Choose chat rooms or communities that are of interest to you

If you are interested in cricket, for example, and you join a group or chat room that is full of people who specialize in billiards, you will not be able to relate much to the members. Since your interests would not match, you won’t be able to contribute and get to know people, thus defeating the whole purpose of joining that chat room. However, if you want to learn about billiards, join anyway — just make your interest and your level of expertise known! To ensure that you find the right kind of people who make you comfortable, it is essential that you choose a forum that covers your interest areas. This will ensure more people will be available to connect, making the initial steps easier.

  • Talk about things that are special to both of you

When you reach out to a stranger and start talking, it implies the need to share something— something that is perhaps simmering inside of you and is a part of your most special memories or fundamental to your personality. Talking about something that is special to you helps break the ice and build trust. But only sharing will not bring complete trust. Ask the other person to share their feelings, memories and moments, too. This will give both of your common ground on which to connect.

  • Try to become more familiar

If you talk to someone regularly, try getting to know more about the person. This will create a sense of familiarity and ensure a step towards security. Most people who join chat rooms are open to sharing about the people or things that are important to them. Talking about those topics can ensure more detailed conversations, increasing the chances you get to know someone well. References to something both of you care about in life will make conversations easier to conduct and maintain.

  • Exchange stories from the past

Exchanging old stories with each other can make things comfortable between you and a stranger/new friend. Having said that, that doesn’t mean you have to share embarrassing or offensive stories. You don’t want to scare the person with something inappropriate, but childhood stories can help break the ice and initiate conversation between quieter talking companions. In case you find your friend on the other side is not too talkative, ask about incidents and things from their childhood — which soccer team they supported or which TV shows they watched or what crazy pet they always wanted. Easy, comforting, universal questions make a good starting point.

  • Ask for advice or knowledge about something they know

Humans love to show their knowledge and grasp of things. If you start talking to a new person about a common interest area or even if the person has different interests and still appears interesting to you, let the person talk about what they know. Asking for their advice about things that they have a stronger perspective on vis-à-vis your own knowledge can help people feel more comfortable. This process can lead to a very fruitful relationship of mutual admiration and respect. You might also share your knowledge on the same topic, and either validate or debate your opinion with your friends. This helps to develop trust, especially when you are beginning a relationship.

  • Listen to the other person

We love to socialize and talk, but when we are trying to get acquainted with a stranger who does not know us or our habits well, we mustn’t make them feel rejected or ignored because we end up talking too much. Good listening is one of the most important tools of communication. Unless you take your time to listen to the other person, it will be difficult to cross that line between stranger and friend. Remember, as much as you like to talk, the other person also has the same need and unless you give them that space or platform, they will not be interested for too long.

Take and give time to process information

While talking or conveying our thoughts is important, we also need to remember that the other person might feel overwhelmed by the bombardment of information from your side. Both you and your conversation partner should take time to process the information adequately to acquaint each with the other person and decide if this is someone you enjoy speaking to and might want to be friends with long term.

Many modern devices come preloaded with a number of social platforms like Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram, and Twitter. Beyond these standard sites, other frequently recommended networking platforms can offer security, choice, and proper resources to connect with new people and find more lasting relationships. When you are trying to meet or get introduced to new people, don’t forget to keep an eye out for cyber fraud and other cyber exploitation. You can read more about that here.

Ensure they have an active and valid social media profile. Somebody with significant social media presence (typically more than 150 followers or friends, for instance) is less likely to be a fraud or a dubious character. Although we can’t get to the bottom of each persons’ biography, it is safer to trace information that can be validated by multiple sources. There are some other chat sites like Camfrog.com that are connected to Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, thus ensuring better security over other chat sites.

How does Camfrog help reach out to more people?

Camfrog is a chat service that offers several special features.

  • Available free for usage – Camfrog can be installed and used on any device free of cost. Basic chat services are available free of cost, allowing you to check out public chat rooms and interest areas based on chat topics. More personalized services and access to private rooms and other updated features are available at the cost of a membership fee.
  • Device agnostic – Camfrog chat services are available on Windows, Android, and iOS Regardless of what device you own, Camfrog is accessible to you. You can now invite your friends from other platforms or meet strangers and make them into friends on Camfrog.
  • User-friendly – Camfrog, like most chat services, is extremely user-friendly with a whole host of attractive features. With a convenient user-friendly interface, supported by virtual gifts and a whole range of emoticons, Camfrog ensures a pleasant and exciting experience for users.
  • Gifting and earning money – To make online chatting, broadcasts, and other services more interesting, Camfrog offers virtual gifts and stickers. You can earn credits and buy these virtual gifts, each of which has a distinct value. Users who start their own stream and gain followers can also earn money by broadcasting their interests and collecting gifts.
  • Multiple language options – Camfrog is available with 57 language packs to ensure language isn’t a barrier in communication. You need to sign in to the site to be able to download a language pack.
  • Deaf-friendly services – Camfrog has built-in features specifically for hearing-impaired users and with the growing popularity of this service among hearing-impaired people, there is a separate deaf video chat room feature and a special feature where the “Talk” mode is automatically disabled.

Meeting new people enhances our world experiences and makes us more informed. Every new person we connect with gives us something new to think about. We can start to learn from them as well as lean on them while offering the same in return. Social networking is often accused of isolating people from a known old world, but that position overlooks the fact that it introduces them to another set of friends who are almost always actively interacting with each other and expressing themselves.

Reaching out to strangers isn’t so bad an idea after all! To quote inspirational speaker Israelmore Ayivor – “Every friend was once a stranger and if you know this, you have to understand that conversations are the beginning of connection”.