How the Pandemic Has Changed Us, Permanently
It seems that the only certainty during the COVID-19 pandemic has been uncertainty – and that change has not come all at once but in a continuous wave. In fact, change itself has changed, and so did we. Faced with new and different ways of doing things, many of us have examined the facets of our lives, from how we entertain ourselves to how we work, and have made a permanent shift.
How? Here’s a look at some of the ways the coronavirus pandemic has changed us for good.
The pandemic’s effect on the economy was front and center as the focus of media headlines and government officials stressing a balance between controlling the virus and preserving the country’s economy. For many workers, this meant working in a new way: work from home – and now that it’s not so new, it seems it’s here to stay. Having gotten a taste for the better work-life balance afforded by remote work, more workers than ever are continuing to work from home, even as workplace and capacity restrictions have lifted across the country. For many workers, telecommuting allows for greater productivity, fewer distractions, and more flexibility to balance professional life with personal life. Thanks to the “Great Resignation” job market, more employers are allowing employees to work from home, realizing that such flexibility is the key to attracting and retaining qualified workers in some roles.
As we learned new healthy habits to help us avoid infection during the COVID-19 pandemic, many people realized that these practices were worth adopting for good. From frequent hand washings and wearing masks, at least during cold and flu season, to wiping down shopping carts, these healthy habits made sense to us as easy ways to stay healthier for the long haul.
Going out and socializing changed a great deal during the coronavirus pandemic. As we had to stay away from loved ones, we turned more to technology to stay connected. As a consequence, even for those relationships we can connect with in person quite easily now, the use of video call and meeting platforms remains high and is expected to stay.
With lock-downs behind us, opportunities for going out and socializing with friends and family are seemingly unrestricted. Even so, many of us have realized that standing in rooms crowded with strangers isn’t as fun as we once thought. The rise of streaming entertainment has prompted film production studios to change how they offer new releases, and additional platforms seem to launch every week. Food delivery – from both grocery stores and restaurants – is also a trend that seems it’s here to stay. All of this makes it easier to have dinner and a movie in – instead of out.
While many people spiraled into poor eating habits and a more sedentary lifestyle during the pandemic, others devoted the extra time they had on their hands to taking better care of themselves. Finding new ways to eat healthier and stay in shape at home, they discovered a new lifestyle and approach for better health. As mental health plunged during the pandemic, due to increased isolation or grief over losing a loved one to the virus, a newfound appreciation for mental health care sent many more of us to mental health providers than before. Awareness of the importance of mental health has risen, helping to take the stigma out of mental health care as it gains greater acceptance.
Virtual health is also going nowhere but up. Whether we’re following up with a physician from a previous visit or checking in with a therapist, its convenience is undeniable. It helps us avoid crowded waiting rooms full of potentially sick people, save travel time, and get back to life or work quicker.
In spite of all these changes, there’s one thing that hasn’t changed. Whether we’re in the midst of a pandemic or in the clear, it’s safe for you to seek the emergency care you need, especially here at Avail Hospital. We’ve always put a priority on safety for our patients and staff – and we always will.