The Novel Corona Virus hit the world by surprise; and while it has negative implications emotionally, physically, and economically, a lockdown has been put in place to restrict the spread of the virus. As we endure the discomfort and pray that things get better soon, this lockdown must have been a learning phase for everyone, I am sure.
In these tough times when social distancing and isolation have become the ‘new normal’, one thing that has kept me sane is — memories. Memories of my travel, of the time spent with friends, of my school and my college days have taken me back in time and connected me with the happier, simpler days. Even going through old photos brought me immense joy.
This lockdown has taught me gratitude; for all the simple things that I took for granted, like financial security, my freedom, my friends and family, my health. Sometimes we don’t realise how blessed we are until something is taken from us through a crisis like the one the world is facing now. I have also learnt to value the food that I eat. It’s a blessing to have things in excess and abundance.
Another thing that this lockdown has given me is time; time to think and reassess my life and notice how rushed I have always been. Sometimes, we get so busy in our lives that we forget to take a break and enjoy nature. Lockdown has given me that break to rejoice nature, to watch the sunrise, the blue sky, and hear the sounds of birds. I have learnt to have even greater respect for nature. Ultimately, everything we have is the gift of nature, so we must protect it instead of destroying it.
Staying home also made me realise the importance of eating home-cooked nutritious food. Besides, I have learnt that cooking yourself is no big deal. You just have to follow the recipe, and you have the perfect treat ready! While eating outside and at restaurants, I hardly paid attention to how much extra I was paying for a simple meal which could be made at home without much effort and at a negligible cost.
Another valuable lesson which I have learnt is that planning is everything. There is a famous saying – “if you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” Planning has helped me remain focussed and manage my time well. It has increased my ability to track my short term and long term goals and keeps me accountable to my goals. This has helped me to be more organised. I am treasuring this time being at home. The lockdown has allowed me to make my days purposeful and productive, just how I like it. It has also helped me do so much more on fronts that otherwise get neglected in the busy routine of my daily life.
Also, I have become more mindful. It’s paramount to live in the ‘Now’. I have understood that when I am in the present moment, both good and the bad vanish, there is no battle then. There is nothing to escape in the present moment. Oprah Winfrey puts it more insightfully, “Living in the moment means letting go of the past and not waiting for the future. It means living your life consciously, aware that each moment you breathe is a gift.”
Another thing that I have realised is that the news doesn’t always need to be followed hour to hour. I now check the news once in the morning and once at night. All this exposure to negative information about the state of the world is likely to have an impact on the state of our mind, our mood, our behaviour and in turn even our general happiness. It can affect our psychological health. Majority of the news that we consume nowadays is likely to be related to COVID-19 crisis. So it’s better to consume less news, but stay informed nonetheless.
In the face of this crisis, we must lead with science and humanity. Our scientific knowledge will continue to aid us in the fight against this ongoing global pandemic. Its indeed wonderful to see that in this time of distress, several people around the globe are extending a helping hand and supporting those in need. It is said that a person needs just three things to be truly happy in this world: someone to love, something to do, and something to hope for. So let’s keep our faith in humanity and help others during this crisis. We can make a difference.
I strongly believe that however long the night, the dawn will break.