Seeking Alternative Pathways
Each and every one of us are not alone in this pandemic. All of us are having a tough time. This perspective hopefully presents some encouragement to find alternatives paths to our usual ways of living; to protect ourselves and our society and overcoming the lurking virus. In life, things will and can go wrong – like this pandemic – and disastrously so, worldwide. We can only accept it, share our burdens, take life one day at a time, and use various coping strategies to weather the storm.
Hopefully, there will be a U-shaped progression where the pandemic reaches some peak and gradually descends – and a vaccine developed – thus bringing about much-needed relief and well-being.
So what happened for most of us during the two cycles of the “Circuit Breakers” – having to Work From Home and to stay at home as much as we can. Our normal routine is disrupted or re-channeled, requiring us to seek new and alternative pathways to go on and forward.
Thankfully using technology, we are able to find a semblance of continuity to our life – in learning, working and meeting – albeit digitally.
Staying and working at home has led to a host of innovative activities and events on-line. Outside activities were “brought” into homes and performed remotely. Meetings, conferences, courses and interest items like dancing and even cooking are being conducted (using zoom for instance) when physical presence in person is not possible.
We are still able and should reach out, and to network virtually. This is a time to strengthen connections with people important to you. This is also a time to connect and re-connect with friends and people from all facets of our life, whom we have missed doing so for a long time.
On top of fulfilling our job commitment, more time at home allows us to focus on our other talents and interests, which usually do not readily surface or are given priority. This is because we used to rush to-and-fro home and workplace daily, and conduct activities outside of home. Being allotted much more time to spend at home, we can re-focus our attention on some of our inherent skills. We could tap on these revealed strengths to enrich us in our future endeavours, and become a better version of our existing self.
Time spent at home is also an opportunity to do some decluttering. Many of us may not have found the time long enough at home, or the energy, or the inclination to do some decluttering previously. This home period presents the opportunity to declutter items like our writing desk, shelf and closet. The place will look neater – and easier to find those organized items when we want them. A tidy environment will induce clearer thoughts and efficiency.
There are some down-sides to being confined at home for too long – what is known as “cabin fever”. Therefore it is imperative to keep healthy – to exercise regularly, indulge in an activity we enjoy doing, and eat well. It is good also to show yourself kindness – which can nurture mind, body and spirit.
Soon, as the CB gradually re-opens, a return-to-work regime will take its course, albeit into a much-changed environment. Work for a person is an important source of personal identity. Prolonged absence from work, as we all know, can be detrimental to an individual’s overall well-being. So there is this need to re-open the workplace, schools and the economy as a whole; only gradually for safety’s sake, when the situation is well-controlled.
After all, health matters. It is a top priority and rightly so. SUSS is gratefully with us all this while, keeping us connected, informed, and guiding us on. Together we will overcome the challenge.
Stay healthy and take care.
Dennis Tan Wu Chen