The blessing of the COVID-19 pandemic
The pandemic came as a shock to us all. I mean, we have never faced anything like this. It’s like something out of a blockbuster movie. We have been indoors for months and if you’re like me, scared to go out for fear of catching this deadly virus.
As things are slowly starting to go back to normal, I reminisce on all the good things that have happened since I’ve been indoors, alone with my thoughts.
I’ve saved money
Saving money has to be my biggest positive from the lockdown. You don’t want to know how much I spend monthly on transport alone in London. I pay through my nose! I’ve saved hundreds by being locked indoors. No hair appointments, no nails, no TFL, no cinema, no dining out, etc. Rona has been good to my pocket.
I took a writing course
I thought about how I could use this time to improve some of the skills that are important in my PR career, and chose to strengthen my writing skills. I took a short but very informative 4 week course with The Comms Avenue and here we are. The most important thing I learnt was to keep writing and this was why I started writing on Medium in the first place. I appreciate constructive criticism on my writing so please feel free to send me a message.
I rekindled an old flame
Nope I didn’t get a new man [yet], I started cooking again. I haven’t been this excited about cooking since I left university. When you’re working 9 to 5, where’s the time to explore in the kitchen?
Anyway, the lockdown gave me an opportunity to change the direction of my foodie Instagram page which started out as a Lagos (Nigeria) restaurant review page.
My friends, Tope and Perkins actually gave me the much needed push to start posting the things I cook on the page. I’m making everything from spices, to pasta dishes to cakes and cocktails. It has also given me the opportunity to explore new social media management tools. Anything that helps me to expand my knowledge is a welcome development.
More time with friends and family
When you’re stuck in a house with another human being, you fight a lot but you get to know them even more. It’s a work in progress but this time was necessary for my brother and I to get to understand each other better.
I’ve also had the opportunity to bond with my friends a little more, over quiz nights and current affairs.
Positives from the world:
New Business Opportunities
The pandemic has given the world an opportunity for necessary advancements in the technology as well as health. In Africa especially, the move to digital was accelerated due to the crisis. Businesses who never considered working from home or having virtual meetings are doing so; everything is online now.
New business opportunities have also been created in different sectors. People are starting new businesses and existing businesses are changing their models. For example some dine-in restaurants are now operating on a delivery-only policy in order to stay safe but keep customers satisfied. We are also seeing innovation in the fashion industry, where immersive experiences are being created; a perfect example is Hanifa, a Congolese fashion designer who debuted her Pink Label Congo collection using 3D Models, on Instagram Live in May.
Personally I’ve attended so many virtual events from the comfort of my home; an opportunity that was not available pre-COVID.
The #BlackLivesMatter Movement
The movement is not a new thing but this year we had protests in all 50 states in America and more countries across the world including the UK and Ireland. This was sparked by the murder of George Floyd in the US, by a white police officer. Black people took a stand, we encouraged our white dominated companies to take a stand against racism. What made this one different? A lot of white people took a stand against racism, which is something that has never happened before. Some didn’t understand the gravity of the situation until this period. A lot of conversations were had, to make people understand the real meaning of white privilege and prejudice. This year was different and I hope that going forward we will continue to have these conversations and break these boundaries.
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We may have been away from our friends and family for more time than expected, most of us may have even added a few inches (or kgs) here and there; we have lost a lot but we have also gained. Every crisis comes with massive opportunities so it’s up to you to take advantage of the situation.
I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one who has had some positive experiences from being in lockdown. I’d love to hear some of yours.