When it appears that the air is filled with not just the Coronavirus but with uncertainty, fear and anxiety, it can be hard for us to fill our minds with positive thoughts, let alone gratitude.
According to the World Health Organisation, as of March 26th 2020, there were over 400,000 confirmed cases worldwide and over 20,000 global deaths as a result of the virus. There were also 200 countries, areas, and territories with reported cases. The pandemic, known as the Coronavirus, Covid-19, or “Rona” (by millennials on social media), has shaken up the entire world without any respect to race, ethnicity, age, gender, income or social status.
Almost every news site, blog or social media post is filled with these statistics and concerns and though valid, they are not my reason for writing this post. I’ve been self-quarantining for 17 days and counting, and I’ve found that though the situation is far from ideal, there are a few things I am thankful for. As per the Serenity Prayer, it’s important to focus on the things that we can control (social distancing, washing hands, what we consume, helping others, our thoughts), and not obsess over the things that we can’t control (the government’s response, statistics and facts, the world’s situation and spread of the virus).
So here are a few things that are fortunately within my control that I’m focusing on right now, and that I’m grateful for.
Spending less money
You probably didn’t expect that to be my first point, did ya? However, if we’re not hoarding toilet paper, surgical masks, and who knows what else, this is a great time to save. Now, I’m not negating the real economic uncertainty that a lot of people are facing with industries plummeting and increased job uncertainty. However, from a spending perspective, this is a great time to save.
No social gatherings. No trips. No outdoor entertainment. For the last two weeks I have only spent money on groceries. Whatever I would have spent on anything else, has been saved and I’m grateful for that.
Time alone to plan and strategize
Most of us are always busy. Busy with work, busy with school, busy looking after everyone else. This period of self-quarantine presents an excellent opportunity to take a step back and have a moment of stillness and creativity. A moment to plan and strategize for when the quarantine is over and set some new personal, business, and/or work-related goals. I’m a firm believer that one does not need to wait for the 1st of January to decide to make a change in one’s life. I’m grateful that by being “forced” to stay indoors, I’m able to be more intentional about my future aspirations and I have uninterrupted time to think them through and devise a plan and strategy.
Time to focus on the priorities
Self-quarantine has created an atmosphere where our priorities are tested and brought to the forefront. From physically spending more time with immediate family to calling, texting and Skyping loved ones around the world, the quarantine has highlighted the important aspects of life that are many times taken for granted. I’m grateful for the time it creates for students to focus on school through distance learning, or the workforce to focus on work for those that are able to work from home. Even if one is not a full-time student, this is a time where new skills can be acquired through various online courses and resources.
Attention to health
With the sensitisation and awareness that has been spread by everyone concerned in regard to personal hygiene and physical health, this season of quarantine could leave us all healthier individuals and hopefully, with transformed lifestyles. From consuming immunity boosters, to eating better, to washing hands after touching public surfaces; I’m grateful that these health concerns are being spread on a global scale. The truth is, it’s not just the Coronavirus that threatens our health and immunity, there are several other viruses and bacteria that cause diseases that real people die from every single day. I hope that these healthy practices will not stop when the Coronavirus is no longer a threat.
Let’s all do what we need to do to fight this, and let’s also remember that there is a silver lining that we can all be grateful for.