The COVID-19 Effect

So, here we are. As a world population, we’re finally sharing something, and it’s not good. The global pandemic coronavirus/COVID-19 has impacted nearly everyone on the planet, in one way or another.

There is the virus and there is the “viral energy”—mindsets of fear/anxiety or viral love/unity that spread and are indeed contagious. Be informed, yet don’t marinate in the in-fighting or get caught up in the anger of who did or didn’t do what. (This is self-poisoning and you don’t have to do it.)

COVID-19 is. We wish it wasn’t, but it is. Most of us are under Stay-At-Home guidelines, for of own health, and I must say—we should be proud of ourselves because we’re doing what needs to be done.

There are people that are fighting to survive and there are many who have died. (I know someone who is fighting and it’s raw and real.) The rest of us have a job to do: to stay at home, for now. There are far too many people who don’t have a home or don’t have a good or safe home. For those of us who do, we need to buck up, accept what is, and be both grateful and creative during this time.

We’re all trying to find the silver lining, to discover how we can do better and grow from this shared experience. Because that’s what we do—we try to do better. Here are some of my thoughts and ideas, some things that I’ve implemented, and some that I write about. I hope these spark inspiration in you and help you to get through this challenging time.

Top Ten Post-COVID-19 Growth Opportunities (click for PDF to print)

#1 Environmental Repair. Less busy-ness and commuting means more time with family and less fossil fuel consumption and emissions. Even if you don’t agree with the urgency of climate change, you can agree that we pollute our water, air, and soil. Since the world has been on pause, we’ve seen an acute clearing and cleaning of our environment. You’ve heard the stories: fish and dolphins return to canals, a visible reduction in greenhouse gas emissions over areas of heavy industry. Previously, we had thought that we couldn’t pause the world to make the changes for planetary wellness. Here’s our time and opportunity to reboot. We’ve seen that it’s possible and we can be the change. What will we do—each of us—going forward to contribute to lowering pollution? What will you now do differently for our environment?

#2 Essential Workers Are Essential. The renewed importance placed on essential workers and less on the upper echelons of business. A greater value is now placed on each person’s contribution to humanity (nurses and doctors, garbage collectors and mail delivery workers and more). Less value placed on economics alone, and more on personal wellness.

#3 Self-Examination. When everything is put on pause you have an opportunity to reflect on your life, priorities, and happiness at your workplace. When you experience how life is short and time with family can be limited you tend to look to re-adjust your priorities and live a life that truly makes you happy and fulfilled.

#4 Self-Empowerment. Ultimately, you must decide what is best for your health in terms of when/if you relax “physical distancing” or handwashing (not the government; you). This situation can feel like you have no control. How can you establish a foundation in the midst of this? What/who can you count on?

#5 Pivot Power/Get Creative. More businesses are getting into on-line learning. It’s been an initiation by fire and many business have had to pivot in a hurry, even overnight! Yoga classes and vocal lessons and doctor’s consults can all be done online and we’re seeing some of the benefits to this new model of operating. (This can be better in many cases: less overhead means more affordable programs, and again—less commute time.)

#6 Love Wins. Learning patience with each other. Learning how to respect each other’s work, space, and time. Make adjustments and considerations when in a house all-together, such as to mute cell phones or place your cell on vibrate. Family dinners. Family activities. While we have suffered by not being able to be social, we can take away a real togetherness with whomever we live with. Village mindset: Reaching out to neighbors, the elderly, and family members. Sharing supplies, asking if others need something when you’re making a trip to the grocery store.

#7 Meditation/Mindfulness. Consider a practice of meditation for global wellness for our planet and people. This is something that anyone can do no matter your economic standing, location, age, or physical ability. You can make a difference: you can send out light energy thoughts for Mother Earth and all beings.

#8 Meet Cutes. Becoming creative in new ways. Keep your favorite traditions and outings by creating new traditions and “outings.” Some of our own old-new outings are: date night at home, working lunch together of the patio, and beach day in our own pool (complete with island music).

#9 Home Improvements. Make home a great place to be: home improvement projects (inside/outside).

#10 Gardening. Create a home or community garden. Since we’ve been under stay-at-home guidelines, we’re starting to see a return to the ways of our grandmothers and grandfathers and First People’s nations—specifically, we’re witnessing a return of the home gardening. Even if you live in an apartment, you can plant seeds in many small pots or containers. A return to home gardening leads to:

  • Greater health and personal empowerment over one’s health.
  • Teaching children where food comes from and creates a connection to the Earth that has been lost in recent generations.
  • A mindset to eat and support local food products rather than demanding apples from another country because they are out of season where we live. We can learn how to support our community and ensure sustainability in times of crisis when the global supply chain is interrupted.
  • Better nutrition (organic) = a stronger immune system.

Be well. Be kind. Be love. — Penelope Jean Hayes, author