People are circulating the #IStayHome hashtag as they document their lives under lockdown

  • Millions of people worldwide are under orders to stay at home to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
  • Many social media users are posting videos and pictures of their home activities under the hashtag #IStayHome.
  • Dancing has become an especially therapeutic escape for many people who are self-quarantining.
  • View more episodes of Business Insider Today on Facebook.

As more and more people are placed in government-mandated lockdowns to halt the spread of the coronavirus, many are turning to social media to urge others to stay home - and show off what they're doing to pass the time. 

And one slogan, translated into countless languages, has risen to the forefront: "I stay home."

In Italy, where nearly 7,000 people have died from COVID-19, social media users began circulating the hashtag #IoRestoACasa as a way to urge people to comply with the government's stay-at-home mandate.Advertisement

Sofia Strazzante, a 20-year-old dancer living just outside of Milan, has been homebound for a month. She posted a video to the #iorestoacasa hashtag of a dance she choreographed to Bishop Brigg's "River." 

For people like her, dancing has become an important way to cope with the boredom and isolation of self-quarantine.

"Dancing is helping me a lot," Strazzante told Business Insider Today. "It's the perfect getaway from negative thoughts."
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Elsewhere in the world, the hashtag has been translated into different languages as more and more countries instruct their citizens to stay home. In Spanish, it's #YoMeQuedoEnCasa and in French, #JeResteALaMaison. Like Strazzante, people from Paris to Buenos Aires are flooding the internet with pictures and videos of singing, dancing, and exercising as they adjust to life indoors.

coronavirus dancing
Leila Kossoy, whose home country of Argentina went into a compulsory nationwide lockdown on March 21, has been posting videos of her children and herself lip-syncing and dancing with costumes on.Advertisement

She said it's a way to have fun in a stressful situation and to connect with her kids.

"We've been looking for ways to entertain the kids so they don't worry about what is happening and don't get bored," she told Business Insider Today. "So we've been doing the things that we like the most, which are dancing, acting, and playing. Let's say in a way we become kids again."

Meanwhile, in France, 14-year-old Djino and his 12-year-old sister Lorenza said the video they posted of them dancing was just one way to help them keep up with their active lifestyles and get their minds off of the anxiety-inducing world.Advertisement

"It helps us forget the confinement," Djino said. "It helps us forget everything outside."

 

It's no surprise that people are turning to social media to share videos of dancing and music, according to Pratt Institute professor of creative arts therapy, Joan Wittig.Advertisement

"I think as humans, our instinct is to share our emotional experiences," Wittig said. "When so much of the world is having to be in pretty strict isolation, where you're at home by yourself or with your family or whoever you live with, there are ways that we can connect with each other through the internet."

And dancing is one way of sharing emotional experiences, especially during a time of uncertainty, she said.

"We don't even know how to talk about exactly how we're feeling in particular because so much is unknown," Wittig said. "We have no idea where this is going. So, we can't even necessarily talk about the feelings that that brings up in us, but we can move about it."Advertisement

"We need to communicate, we need to be in connection with each other. And dance allows us to do that. And it allows us to do that across cultures, across language. There are no barriers."

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