Was life before COVID-19 normal?
Do we really want to go back to the same life and habits we had right before the pandemic? Hasn’t this situation taught us anything?
All through the lockdown, I’ve heard many complain about how they wish they could go back to their lives before COVID-19. They believe that life was perfect before the unexpected pandemic hit.
I don’t disagree that we had more freedom; we were free to go wherever we wanted, see who we wanted, get together, go to the beach, plan birthdays, and party all night long. We didn’t have to worry about the person next to us who was sneezing or coughing. It wasn’t life-threatening. We were hopeful for tomorrow and could plan for the days ahead without a single worry.
I don’t disagree with any of that, but here’s what COVID-19 has taught me and how it changed the way I look at life:
1. Nothing is promised.
We need to stop taking things for granted because tomorrow’s never promised. Before COVID-19, we were careless and thought that tomorrow belonged to us. Just five months ago, we would’ve never guessed that a life-threatening virus would destroy thousands of lives. But here we are, living one day at a time. We’re just happy to get through the day.
2. Be good to others, and always choose kindness.
We never know what the future has in store and whose help we’re going to need. Let’s lift each other up by lending a helping hand whenever we can
3. Make each moment count.
Take advantage of the present because it’s all that we’ve got. Tomorrow may never be ours. We must do all we can to make it work. Seize the day and embrace each hour. The days will pass us by, but the memories are forever. Make sure to create a memory lane that is actually worth remembering.
4. Reach out more.
Call friends, family, and loved ones.
We can send a message to let them know how highly we think of them or that they mean the world to us. It’s essential to reach out when they least expect it. We don’t have to wait for a pandemic to let people know that we’re grateful for their presence in our lives.
5. Work hard.
Yes, work hard. We can rest if we need to, but then we should get up again and work hard the next day. Don’t just count on a salary to bring goals to life. The pandemic has shown us how we can quickly lose our job without even getting fired. Contemplate another source of revenue—a backup plan. Maybe we can even create our own business. It will be fun to watch it grow, and it can be a stepping stone to becoming financially independent.
6. Value people.
Quit thinking that those who have a higher paying job will come to the rescue when we’re shipwrecked. We’ve seen who the real heroes are. The cashier we never really paid attention to, the journalists who put their lives at risk so we can peacefully watch the news from our couch. The nurses and doctors who have been on the frontline for our safety. Thank you to them. And next time we order something, make sure we thank the delivery person for their services.
7. Rest and make some time for ourselves.
We are starting to realize that we, too, are worthy of rest and care. Take care of yourself. Take a nap throughout the day if we feel like it. Practice mindfulness, read a book, or watch a documentary. Go to the kitchen and try out a new dish or create a meal plan. We can do whatever, but we need to make sure to make time for our well-being.
Most importantly, let’s stop pretending that our hectic, stressed, crowded, and polluted lives before the virus were all flowers and sunshine. Now that we’ve discussed all that, do we still want our “normal” life back? Or do we want to start working toward a better version?