Positives in a Pandemic? Let’s Try.

The COVID-19 pandemic has certainly caused a huge disruption to our work and personal lives. There is so much sad news driving fear and uncertainty. It is an exhausting way to exist. But is it possible to find a few positives in this gloomy era? I hope so. Let’s try:

  • Embrace a slower pace. Although the pace of the pandemic is break-neck, our personal pace does not necessarily need to mirror that path.  Some of us (health care workers and employment lawyers) may not be able to heed this approach, but the rest of us just may be able to do that. While we adjust to new routines, full homes and shifted work scenarios, perhaps we can slow down just a touch. Dare I say now is a good time to establish a work/life balance that includes more exercise, meditation and reading?
  • Be helpful to each other. Although we need to practice appropriate social distancing, now is a good time to offer your ear for someone who needs to talk through something. Or perhaps check in on someone who may struggle in unstructured times. If you have elderly people in your life, perhaps help them set up online grocery delivery services.
  • Share your knowledge. Now is a great time to write those articles and blog posts you have been thinking about. Post your content on social media or email it to others for input.
  • Connect through video services. Why not have a virtual coffee or lunch date? Set up FaceTime or some other video call service appointments to chat and catch up with friends, colleagues, clients and referral sources.
  • See new things. Visit museums, aquariums and zoos from all over the world virtually. Many of these institutions are offering livestream from their facilities.
  • Enjoy the forced togetherness within your family. Some of you, myself included, may have a full house again after not living together for some period of time. Once you have all adjusted to the new arrangement, make the most of this time together. Consider old-school fun such as a daily family meal, a movie night, tackling a puzzle together or holding a video game competition. Whatever you choose, embrace the time together while you are healthy. And if suddenly you aren’t healthy, take care of each other in the safest possible way.

Yes, these are scary times. Since there aren’t any choices, I think we have the power to make the most of it. A friend of mine who passed away last year inspired me on one of our visits during his final decline. He told me, “I have learned to focus on what I can do today. Not what I can’t.” These are words to live by in all environments. But a week into this pandemic, I find it particularly wise. And I am so grateful. On a final note– social distance yourself, help family members to embrace the same, and be there for each other emotionally and mentally when you can’t be there physically.