The COVID-19 pandemic has changed our lives in ways few could have foreseen, and it’s posed new challenges but also introduced new opportunities. People have had to alter their work, family, and social lives radically. Some changes may be temporary, lasting only for the duration of the pandemic, but other adjustments may be permanent–especially those for whom the pandemic has brought significant loss.
While it is hard to imagine something as devastating as a global pandemic having any silver linings, the challenges of this time have served as a catalyst for many to make positive changes in their lives. Today, America’s Loan Company explains a few of these changes.
Career changes with positive outcomes took place.
The pandemic left many people temporarily laid off, or even with their jobs terminated. Anxiety and depression ramped up, due to financial worry, both for the unemployed and for those with job insecurity. Seeking new work, especially while trying to juggle the demands of family life and following public health restrictions, added to the burden.
But surprisingly, a majority of those who lost work have since made career changes, sometimes for the better. Workers who were unsatisfied with their previous jobs are training for new work, even starting their own businesses. By turning to a service that can walk you through the legal steps, you can rest assured that you’re set up to meet the requirements of your state (and avoid hefty attorney fees).
Working from home became the new normal.
Lockdowns and quarantine orders left many people working from home – which, as Limegreen Communications points out, comes with its own set of pluses and minuses. The benefits include greater flexibility, of course, and there are countless resources to make working from home a little easier – from video conferencing platforms and virtual timesheets to free tools that let you convert JPG to PDF online and make email marketing a little easier.
While many remote workers enjoyed the increased flexibility and opportunities for family time, a lack of division between work and home created additional stress. Trying to work while caring for family created additional difficulty for those responsible for children or dependents.
Workers who thrive in a team atmosphere miss the human contact, and even the office banter. Experts suggest that remote work, or at least a hybrid model, may become the norm even post-pandemic, notes the Society for Human Resource Management, so more workers may need to come up with ways to deal with the downside of working from home.
Major life changes were impacted.
The non-contact paradigm of social distancing that COVID-19 prompted will continue into the near future, especially as flu season kicks in. This has affected making major life transitions, such as moving into a new home. Not only are homebuyers impacted by fewer in-person open houses, but also moving day itself is chock full of new guidelines, such as limited contact with the movers. Find out what your moving company’s policies and procedures entail as soon as you start planning the move.
Homeschooling and hybrid schooling are a thing.
The coronavirus pandemic forced many parents into homeschooling with no warning. For some, this provoked increased stress, and they had to find creative ways to cope. Parents of special needs children especially felt the strain of trying to replicate what school programs, tutoring, and therapy are supposed to provide while also fulfilling work obligations.
Yet other families found that homeschooling worked better for them. The schedule flexibility allows for kids to get more sleep, which can support mental and physical health. And children who are more comfortable with self-directed learning tend to flourish in homeschooling situations. For students who were experiencing stress at school, especially due to bullying, learning at home can be desirable.
The idea of a vacation changed.
With the fluctuation in cases, and even prior to vaccine availability, many people looking for ways to escape their homes found new ways to make travel work for them. Road tripping eliminated the need to be around others in confined spaces like airplanes, and hotel rentals were eschewed for vacation rentals. With the ability to have full kitchens, proximities to lakes or beaches or socially distant activities, vacation rental bookings skyrocketed. More travelers are learning to think beyond the usual flight+hotel packages too, opting for secluded glamping adventures or even thru-hiking for sabbaticals.
We made changes to our health and fitness.
Individuals who were in lockdown for long periods likely found weight gain almost impossible to avoid. Stress eating and lack of gym access have also led to an increase in poundage for many Americans. As a result of this, important conversations about body positivity have come to the fore. At the same time, people who rely on exercise and dieting to maintain physical and mental health or keep their energy levels up have had to come up with new approaches to exercise and fitness.
This out-of-the-box thinking saw more people choosing to sign up for online fitness classes through sites like Alo Moves, Fitness Blender, Daily Burn or even Peloton Digital One. Preferring different approaches, other people created personal home gyms, adding extra features like TRX suspension trainers and even inflatable hot yoga tents.
Little routines we barely thought about before were drastically changed in the last few years. Even something as simple as grocery shopping has become a complicated and stressful process. Yet the upside of this is that many Americans are discovering new resources of creativity and resilience and acquiring skills that will pay off for years to come.
Article writen by Emma Grace Brown For America’s Loan Company