5 Positives of COVID-19

The last seven months of our lives have been unlike anything we have ever experienced before. If you’re wondering how it’s been seven months of living like this or when things will be back to normal, you're not alone. But for right now, this is what our reality looks like. Here are a few positives of the COVID-19 pandemic to help you feel better about our current situation.

Family time 

Although you might not see this as a positive at first glance, let me explain. I was supposed to go to MSU this fall. However, I am learning from home and although I was ready to move on this extra time at home has been a gift. My mom is also working from home so instead of having to adjust to seeing her only a couple times a month, I found myself adjusting to hearing her work on the other side of the wall. My brother moved out to go to college four years ago and was supposed to move to Manhattan to start a new job last summer. If he hadn't been forced to come home, I likely would have seen him maybe once and instead I see him every day. Although having family work from home can be tricky, it’s also fun to spend time together knowing that if COVID had never happened we wouldn't have been able to. Yes, family can be annoying and get on your nerves but at the end of the day they're your home. At the beginning of the pandemic when no one knew what was going to happen and the world seemed to be spiraling with panic, family was a safe haven. 

Appreciating the small things 

This summer, I found myself sitting in my backyard more than I have probably ever in my life. I found myself noticing how beautiful nature is. The way the sun shines through the leaves at sunset, the way the air feels like a hug on a warm day, even just the way some trees are shaped. With all of our extra time at home, I bet you’ve noticed something that you never have before. This provides an opportunity to reflect on life and what is most important. Take time this week to notice something new about your environment, even though it seems like it's the same every day I bet there's something you've never noticed before. 

More time to reflect on current events 

Lately, the news has been flooded with Black Lives Matter protests all over America. City after city there was coverage of streets flooded with people chanting and holding signs. Even my small town of Milford had their very own protest. If it weren't for the large number of people working from home this likely wouldn’t have been possible. Everyone is more informed on what is happening in the world around them because they have the time to check in on the news more than normal. 

More flexibility in your work week 

How many times in the past when you were at work do you remember feeling like your schedule was preventing you from doing the things that you wanted to do? I know there were plenty of times at school I would have done absolutely anything to take a nap. Although we aren’t completely available, in terms of still having classes and work, I definitely find time for an afternoon nap now. Online learning allows you to bend your schedule to work for you. Not to mention there is zero travel time and you can wake up four minutes before class starts if that's what works best for you. 

Time to pursue hobbies

Since March, this word has made me roll my eyes: “hobbies.” Everyone was talking about having time to work on their hobbies. Personally, as someone who doesn’t have many hobbies, I thought they were just a waste of time. However, here we are seven months later and I’ve learned to sew and bake. I’ve learned that I find baking very stress-relieving and enjoyable. Pursuing hobbies helps you to learn about yourself and can be a great source of stress relief which we all need. The COVID-19 pandemic has knocked normal off the pedestal. Every one of us could list many things that the pandemic has made us miss out on. But instead of getting caught up in what we can’t do, we should turn our attention to everything that we can do now. We should try to enjoy this slower paced lifestyle and remember all the times in our busy days when we just wanted to go home and put our feet up. Let’s make this time enjoyable because this is life right now—the only life we get. We only have so much time here on Earth and even when it feels like the Earth has turned against us we’ve got to make the best of it.