Covid-19 has brought our world to a standstill. Maybe, you have re-examined your life – and set out new priorities. The day we stop learning is the day we stop growing. Sometimes a crisis can slap us in the face and wake us up. Here are 10 things I feel we all need to learn…..
1. Many people often dreamed of working from home. Thousands are now finding out what that’s like. Maybe, it has given you a better quality of life by shortening your working day. Driving is tiring and stressful and made your working day much longer. There are also people who’ve discovered that working from home is more stressful than being in the workplace. Now you know.
2. Many people are exercising much more. Some people who never exercised before have formed a habit of daily exercise. You often read about the physical and mental benefits of exercise – now you’re getting the benefits yourself.
3. We often stressed ourselves out by believing that we never had enough time to do work around the house and garden. If only I had more time – you used to say. Now you have more time. These weeks will have revealed whether time was the issue or whether you never motivated yourself sufficiently to use time properly.
4. We have a greater awareness of the critical role nurses play in our health system. They are poorly paid and under-valued. There has been ongoing difficulties with recruitment because of this. Maybe, we need to examine the salaries and working conditions of all health professionals. Trainee doctors were doing absolutely unreasonable hours. The porter, cleaners, lab technicians and others have proven to be the unsung heroes. We pay a lot of taxes and must ensure that these professions remain attractive career options into the future.
5. Teaching is a vocation. Zoom and google classroom allow for innovative approaches but nothing replaces the teacher in the classroom. Parents have now discovered that. Yet we have younger teachers on unequal pay – doing the same (and often more) work for less money. Let’s put this right.
6. Covid-19 stole far too many lives from one particular group – the elderly. There was practically a wipeout of our most esteemed citizens – people who worked hard and paid their taxes all their lives. We need to have a comprehensive overhaul of old people’s homes. We need to ensure that this sector becomes 5 star. A society that cannot look after the most vulnerable is a selfish and dangerous society.
7. Local businesses are the lifeblood of local communities. When our cafes, bars and restaurants re-open we need to support them. We need to do all we can to get them up and running again. We need to be more loyal to our locality or all our retail stores will be wiped out entirely by Amazon and other online monsters who contribute nothing to our communities.
8. Private hospitals opened their doors to public patients. There should be no private healthcare system. There should be one system for the rich and poor. Money in your pocket should not shorten queues. Wealth should not determine best procedures. There should be no need for health insurance. Open our hospitals to all our citizens!
9. Mount Everest is once again visible from Kathmandu after decades hidden by thick smog. Greenhouse gas emissions have fallen to levels last seen in the early 2000s. We can hear more birds singing. We have been connecting better with nature. Let’s stop ignoring the dangers that threaten it. Maybe, we should protect our environment more. Nature proved to be a very loyal friend over recent months.
10. Family and friends are what gives our lives meaning. We need to invest more time in them. Maybe, we have reconnected. Maybe we have got to know each better. We should never take these relationships for granted.