The Silver Lining of the Coronavirus Pandemic

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I know, I know, the title of this blog post is crazy. How can we possibly find anything positive about an unknown, rampant, terrifying virus that has turned our world upside down over the course of the past 6 weeks??? Clearly, the situation is terrible, as countless lives have been impacted negatively, and my intention is not to make light of this fact. I am a firm believer in the idea that nothing is entirely positive or negative, however, and each event or circumstance has elements of both. Whenever possible, I think it is helpful to extract and embrace the positive sides and learn from the negative ones. So what good things could possibly come out of this situation???

Before the Coronavirus quarantine, everyone was busy . . . including me. Constantly answering texts, leaving one meeting early to arrive at the next one late, and responding to the constant barrage of urgent Facebook notifications. For many people, this lifestyle of “go-go-go” is noble in pursuit, as they’re constantly accomplishing, checking boxes and taking care of those whom they love. But times like the current cause us to stop and think: is all “go” and no “stop” really the best way to live?

The only issue with the “go-go-go” lifestyle is it doesn’t leave much time to think about what you’re “go-go-going” toward. It’s seems great if we’re constantly accomplishing tasks to “move us forward,” but what if we’re moving forward in the wrong direction? I believe this trend exists in society to be so busy that we often don’t stop to evaluate the quality of activities that are occupying our time. I’m definitely guilty myself! As a high-achiever, as many of us are, my tendency is try to do it all.

Although it has been forced not chosen, the Coronavirus shutdown has bestowed upon us the opportunity for self-reflection. It has forced us to hit “pause” on normal life. It has given us the opportunity to reflect on our “normal” activities and think critically about whether or not they should remain normal in the future. Amongst all the terrible aspects of today’s current situation, I believe this time is a gift.

Although our current situation is the opposite of what we would choose, the positive impacts that this situation provides, for me, are palpable. Over the past six weeks, I have talked to friends and family members who are contemplating a career change, planning to be more selective with social events, and looking to make choices that will lead to more happiness. Often times, “go-go-go” serves everyone else, but neglects the person who should be put first … you. This break in the action gives all of us a chance to reflect on who we are, who we want to be, and how we’re going to get there. Amid the chaos and uncertainty, let’s work to be grateful for this time, as it’s ours whether we want it or not. If we carry our thoughts forward when we resume normalcy, I believe it will lead to happier, more productive and fulfilling lives for all of us.

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