Learnings from the Pandemic

The biggest thing I have learned from the pandemic so far is how different people are. I always recognised this but it’s become more and more obvious as layers of life have been peeled away.

Clearly, people have been affected very differently by the pandemc in terms of suffering and that has to be fully recognised. Also, some have gained in economic terms, at least, whilst others have been hit very badly.

But, what I am really talking about is the way in which the pandemic has revealed very real differences in how we deal with adversity and uncertainty.

What is important for one person, such as physical appearance, make be entirely irrelevant to another. Big divides have emerged in relation to those who put self-interest and freedom above collective interest and concern for global wellbeing.

Coping mechanisms vary hugely. Some are keeping busy busy to try and stay afloat while others are treading water and just going with the flow.

Some find that their identity is almost under attack whereas others are more confident about who they are.

Some have to read every single piece that is written and spoken about every aspect of the virus while others have switched off.

Some are full of hope while others are much more cautious.

Some are enjoying the lockdowns while others are living in dread of every moment.

Some are suffering desperately because of the extent to which the virus has pretty much taken over the health services; others are oblivious.

Some are living in the moment while others have wandered to the past or into the future.

In other words, we have to get to grips with the fact that people, including people we thought we knew well, may be perceiving and experiencing the pandemic very differently to us and we somehow have to find a way to cope with that or else the divisions could get dangerously deep.

Who knows how much this pandemic will change lives and perspectives forever or will society return to where it was as if by reset button and trundle on.

It seems important to me that we learn from this time, if only to leave a legacy for those coming after us who may well have to go through something similar.

Author: socialbridge

I am a sociologist and writer from Ireland. I have worked as a social researcher for 30 years and have had a lifelong passion for writing. My main research interests relate to health care and sense of place.

20 thoughts on “Learnings from the Pandemic”

  1. this certainly is true..ive noticed vast differences in people over the past year..struggling to find themselves in this very different environment. I know i just feel like i am constant survival mode..somehow i keep thinking of the phrase “only the strong will survive”..

  2. How correct your perceptions are…People are dealing with their own insecurities and it affects their personalities that we thought we knew. And how we are perceived by our friends and loved ones also…Everyone has his or her battles to overcome be it health or everyday living…Let’s hope all will be of a positive note some where down the line, and each one of us will be a better person because of it .

  3. Jean, I see it so clear even in our small family circle. Some have lost jobs with no outlook for a new position, some have found new jobs, and some are working from home. Every family has been economically impacted in some way and those with children have them trying to study from home. It is such a stressful time for so many.

    1. Hi Maggie, yes so many are in very stressful situations.
      I have been a bit surprised by the numbers of people whose income has not been adversely affected. It seems like there is a huge divide in that regard and some are even benefiting hugely at an economic level. I doubt anyone is benefiting at all levels.

      1. It is far reaching to so many people. I only wish those at elevated untouchable levels are able to see the devastation and do something to help.

  4. The things that have been revealed about friends and family will not go away, the surprises that were uncovered about people who were raised with the same rules and values as you have shocked and amazed me. That knowledge will always be in the back of my mind as I deal with these people in the future.

  5. I think that newest meme that has been circulating is perfect to go with your words.
    We are all in the same sea but not in the same boat.
    We have to use loving-kindness right now. We are all different and deal with situations the best we can with what we have – physically, mentally, financially, etc…

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