El cocooning

How the cocooning begins

Cocooning is a term created in the 1980s by a marketing and advertising consultancy called Faith Popcorn. This company was a trend hunter and coined this term to a behavior of the society that, among other things, began to make teleshopping from home while e-commerce and home entertainment grew.    

After the “crazy” 70s, in which nightlife in discos and parties was the norm, with the expansion of new technologies and the arrival of the Internet a few decades later, a profound change would take place in society. People would move from the excesses of the night to prefer a quieter life, enjoying the comfort provided by home, without the need to go out to enjoy themselves, because they began to have everything they needed at home.

What does cocooning mean? 

Cocoon means wrapper, or bubble, and the word cocooning alludes to the action of hiding or keeping oneself. The term is used to express the tendency of human beings to be attached to staying at home and to socialize less and less, in the way we used to know, turning the home into a refuge. These people feel well by isolating themselves from the outside world, escaping from the fast pace, noise, possible conflict situations or situations that can sometimes frighten us. 

What causes cocooning in today’s age?

In recent times, the expansion of the Internet and the digital revolution has favored isolation due to the wide range of possibilities that exist in home care. The possibility of buying everything we want without leaving the couch or ordering food at home, would be an example. According to the latest report published by Nielsen Iberia in 2020, 10% of monthly food purchases are home delivered. 

The same is true for entertainment. Streaming platforms have seen the number of users contracting them grow steadily in recent years. Television, series and movies on demand adapted to the preferences of each user. Video games to play alone or with others and a series of plans that, for many people, are more attractive than going out on the weekend to an outside activity, a disco or a getaway. 

One more convenience that strengthens cocooning: dating apps. These apps offer you the opportunity to meet people, without having to set foot on the street and they are having a considerable increase in recent years. According to Digital Market Outlook by Statista, it is predicted that by the end of 2021, dating and friendship apps will reach 370 million active users.

Worldwide, the United States is the country with the highest percentage of users of online dating services, followed by Brazil and, in third position, Spain. Although cocooning is increasing due to the electronic age, it is not decreasing in screen activities. Any manual, physical and sensory activity that can be enjoyed at home, are options that allow you to feel comfortable and fulfilled at home. Some ideas are reading, arts and crafts such as painting or pottery, cooking, gardening, practicing yoga, listening to music, the radio or a conversation with a partner

Does this trend have any negative effect on the human being? 

Entertainment, consumption and socializing; all from the same scenario: your home. Cocooning is a trend already consolidated before the COVID-19 pandemic, but after it, it seems to be reinforced among the population. It is not only the possibility of enjoying from home, now you can also work within the walls of your own home.

Psychological experts are clear: cocooning is highly recommended for people with hectic lives and busy schedules. People who do not know how to conceive their life without always having a thousand plans fit together like Tetris pieces. For these people, moments to stop, breathe and relax at home are necessary, creating a space in which to learn and reflect on the need to put the brakes on and be alone without feeling bad about it.

Therefore, the context is vital to know for whom cocooning can be positive or negative. One third of the population suffers from unwanted loneliness. This occurs when an individual has a network of social relationships that is insufficient in quantity or quality. These people, little by little, become isolated from the world and are at risk of permanent loneliness. For someone in this situation, the outside is so hostile that, thanks to the comforts of home, they see it as unnecessary to have to face it.

For this type of person, cocooning is counterproductive. It causes many individuals, couples or families to become too intimate and, over time, triggers a feeling of deep loneliness, with very harmful consequences for health. When signs of cocooning are detected in this profile, it is best to remedy it before it is too late. Get out of the house, look for plans that make us excited, sign up for an activity to meet other people and little by little, overcome emotional barriers.