What happens when life gets hard?
This is a question I have severally asked myself during this pandemic as It’s been more than two-months since key day activities that will get me closer to my personal & professional goals have been paused. This also has a negative effect on my psychological, financial, emotional and social wellbeing. There is nothing as devastating as seeing my plans for 2020 become unrealistic. For example, I had a trip planned out to visit my family in early April as well as developing key contact in Nigeria for my field research regarding child’s right in Nigeria. Sadly, the current pandemic has interrupted my plan, making me going back to the drawing board to reconstruct my plans for the 2020. I have no other reason than to accept that this has been one of the worst period of my years, which keeps me wondering if 2020 is going to start all over again (LOL).
Having said that, I believe it is wise to make the best we can out of bad situation. I have been able to learn several things from the pandemic and I would like to share key take-out this life changing event has taught me.
- Identifying my self-worth: During this pandemic situation, I have realized how much I can make of myself. I appreciate myself more as I am literally living without any form of physical social contact with people. Thanks to technology as it connects people from different part of the world through mobile phones, texting and video applications. I have learnt to believe more in myself and my capacity to handle difficult times.
- Investing time in passion: I have an interest in photography and content creation. I try as much as possible to give time to this interest especially on my Instagram handlehttps://www.instagram.com/tobioyefeso/. However, meeting the demands of my interest clashes with my academic and career pursuit. Thanks to COVID-19, it is not entirely a period of crisis because I have been able to invest more time into building up my passion and creating contents as this post and some other posts on this blog. Hopefully, I should create time for this passion when the pandemic is over and life goes back on the fast lane.
- Cherishing family and friends: Before the pandemic, I showed little concern about the welfare of those around me especially family and friends. I barely make and receive calls, work and school made it almost impossible to respond to text messages. For instance, I have family members in the United Kingdom and I have not seen the since I began my Postgrad program. The pandemic almost made me disregard the importance of family and friends. Again, the pandemic is a blessing (not in the natural sense of a blessing) because I have become very close to the wellbeing of my family and friends. The daily updates on death from the virus makes me appreciate that family is everything and can do little without them, since my family and friends gives me the support I need at this important time of my life.
- Patience: It is a key take-out learnt in this time. Sometimes, all I need is a moment to relax and breath and let things happen at the appropriate time. Since I am only a human being with goals and plans for my life, I can barely identify when a time is appropriate. The pandemic has taught me to sit and do things calmly. For instance, I have been waiting for my confirmation letter for my primary data collection and waiting for job vacancies (LOL). Right now, all I have to do is to be calm and wait. Hoping that good fortune meets my hardwork.
- Depression: This almost messed me up during this period and the reason was built around fear and uncertainty. As a young lady, I have my life planned out with key milestones that would help me define success. There was a time I was very sick and in so much pain but I was scared to call an ambulance. The whole sickness, isolation, financial constraints, academic difficulties almost got me thinking about what exactly life is all about. All I believed and hoped for was God’s Intervention. Having said that, I had to stand up and fight against negative thoughts that will deter me from seeing a brighter future ahead.
- Procrastination: This devils tool has made me delay in performing certain activities that are would improve my career and academic goal post COVID-19. In February I was meant to conclude on my research structure but I felt lazy about the process because I felt I could do it after my holiday in March. The pandemic came and took the world by surprise, which constrained me from making key progress on my research. Therefore, this pandemic has taught me to get done with things as quick as possible as time is limited.
- Poor financial planning: I assume no one had a plan, especially a financial one to manage this pandemic. Like you, I was taking unawares and i wished I had more savings to suit my bills through the pandemic. This has taught me how important it is to save for the future. Going forward, I will factor in unforeseen circumstances in my savings and investments. I think you should too.
- Health and Fitness: Everyone needs to be healthy in order to pursue their goals and carry out plans they have set for themselves. In my case, I wanted to do more exercise to stay fit physically and mentally. It has been difficult to follow my exercise routines in order to maintain proper body fitness. The reason is closely related to procrastination and my ability to strictly watch my diet. However, the place of physical exercise is important for me and you. All I can do is hope that my body weight does not increase but guess what, hope is never a strategy.
Having said all these, I presume life will not be the same for a lot of us but we need to get ready for post COVID-19.
Thanks for taking out time to learn from my experience. I would love it if you can share your experience from this pandemic in the comment section.