This is a horrific and challenging time. There is nothing inherently positive about Coronavirus; it has destroyed economies around the world, broken down businesses and resulted in a widespread loss of life. What the mass media doesn’t provide us with, is hope. The media focus upon the tragic news stories and consistent consumption of this news can be damaging and leave us with a picture of hopelessness. However, there are many positives of this current pandemic, and I wish that they give you hope for the future.
Exercise, exercise, exercise. I have never seen so many people walking past my house or riding their bikes around the neighbourhood. People are spending time outside, and it’s even becoming part of individuals routine. And let’s not forget the dog community who are currently experiencing the highlight of their lives. Various studies have also concluded the health benefits of mild to moderate exercise multiple times a week. It can reduce the risk of severe health issues such as heart disease, but also boost or support your immunity. Mentally, exercise is also impactful in escaping from the indoors and releases chemicals in your brain, such as serotonin and endorphins, which are great for your mood. Keep moving and keep active!
Solving the Climate Crisis? Well, this pandemic may not solve the climate crisis, but it is definitely contributing to a reduction of emissions. The lockdown in China led to an estimated 25% reduction in energy use and emissions over 2 weeks compared to previous years. Moreover, the airline industry contributes 2.6% of global carbon dioxide emissions, but this number is expected to freefall as international travel is put in limbo for many months to come. It is almost certain that emissions will reduce in 2020 (somewhere between 0.3-1.3 per cent), which is a positive impact of the crisis. However, we must continue to prioritise minimising our emissions after the crisis and even keep certain practises that we have learnt during this period, such as online meetings instead of long-haul business flights.
Use of Technology. Quarantine has forced us into utilising online resources to replace all our activities, education and entertainment needs. I didn’t even know what zoom was until having to use it for online learning, and I have even witnessed older generations embrace technology. This pandemic has forced us to create new ways of teaching, news ways of interacting with others and new opportunities for success. I am sure that many of these new activities we are currently developing will continue long after the end of the virus. We are witnessing the greatness of technology as a tool of connection.
Exercise, the use of technology and the reduction of emissions are three positives of COVID-19 pandemic. Although there is much pain and uncertainty during this time, there are still small positives, moments of laughter and joy that we can hold on to.
Let’s not socially distance ourselves. Let’s physically distance ourselves but remain socially connected.