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30 Life Lessons From Close To 3 Years Of The COVID-19 Pandemic.

As a quick follow-up to my just published 10 business lessons from almost three years of the COVID-19 pandemic, this is another long(er list of 30 life lessons from close to three years of the COVID-19 pandemic:

  1. Consumers will adopt e-commerce at scale when it’s the only way they can get things done but will revert to in-person shopping as they like to see, touch, and feel what they are buying as well as the serendipitous human interactions that happen as well. 
  2. There is magic in the mundane when you have nothing better to do like washing dishes, learning how to knit, or cutting your own hair when you’re living and working from home. 
  3. Podcasts, audiobooks, and social audio (i.e. Twitter Spaces and Club House) become a lifeline for the in-between times so that a boring commute or washing the dishes can be much more interesting!
  4. Social media, online gaming, and virtual meetings became a proxy for human social interaction and serves us well enough when we can’t meet in person. 
  5. Humans have a remarkable ability to adapt to extremely unfamiliar circumstances to the extent that after wearing masks and sanitizing incessantly we can also reacquaint ourselves with familiar pre-pandemic lifestyles, almost as if it never happened. 
  6. As many worked remotely, they also saw an opportunity to relocate to different cities, towns, and even countries to do the things they had put off for years and in the process enriched their lives. 
  7. We learned that our daily commutes from home to work and back again rob us of time and happiness that endless traffic can destroy but every so often we still crave the chaos of battling matatus on a well-potholed road!
  8. We learned how to cook things from scratch for the very first time via YouTube when the restaurants and hotels we used to frequent closed and fully appreciated what it takes to create a great meal!
  9. Many married couples and partners finally learned what their spouses did at work for the very first time by sharing the home office, dinner table, or living room within close proximity of their many zoom calls. 
  10. It was a hard transition going back to eating out in restaurants and cafes when we finally appreciated how much more they cost compared to cooking at home. 
  11. Online food delivery services became a lifestyle essential for many individuals and families as a means of killing the monotony of preparing and eating home-cooked food. 
  12. Many husbands and boyfriends finally learned how the washing machine actually works!
  13. Gym memberships seem overrated and overpriced when you can put on your running shoes or ride a bike and get a decent workout for free!
  14. Working on a dining table or the sofa on a daily basis is not kind on your back and bum so we bought or borrowed real office furniture that’s ergonomically suitable.  
  15. Many people finally finished their home construction projects in their shaggs (i.e. villages) as they realized that they could relocate permanently.  
  16. Having a face mask on every day and all day made us realize the simple joy of breathing freely is not to be taken for granted! 
  17. Being in great health and in peak physical condition is no prerequisite for a long life when a pandemic can indiscriminately take the lives of anyone and everyone, rich or poor, young or old, healthy or unhealthy.
  18. The quality of your medical insurance as well as the hospital you go to can be the difference between life and death in the face of a pandemic.
  19. Humans have an incredible capacity to not only adapt to truly daunting circumstances but can equally indulge in unsafe practices in the face of almost certain death for the sake of nostalgic habits. 
  20. The pandemic showed us that industries like travel and hospitality can be unexpectedly disrupted overnight and millions of jobs can be lost in the blink of an eye. 
  21. Parents learned for the very first time how to access school management systems so that they could keep tabs on how their children were performing in school as they attended remotely. 
  22. The phrase ‘supply chain’ became exponentially popular as everyone finally understood the implications of how goods and services move from point A to point B. 
  23. The advent of most churches streaming services online became a tipping point of sorts in that everyone and everything could be digitally transformed.  
  24. ‘Revenge travel’ became a thing as many of us quenched our thirst for new (and old) travel experiences as we stayed at home for most of the pandemic.
  25. Healthcare workers and hospitals showed us how incredibly important they are and that their contribution to humanity is invaluable. 
  26. The quality of your Internet at home becomes a real factor when everyone needs to go to school, attend work meetings, create content and download gigabytes of data. 
  27. Streaming services like Netflix, YouTube, and Spotify exploded in uptake and traditional media felt the brunt of consumers leaving. 
  28. Laptops and tablets were acquired at scale by parents of school-going children so that they could learn remotely. However, at the same time, we learned the risks of having children online without adequate cyber security measures with sometimes terrible consequences. 
  29. We are still confused between awkwardly shaking hands or doing fist bumps when we meet people in person. I’m not sure if this will ever change! 
  30. The pandemic was a wake-up call for many to adopt healthier lifestyles in terms of better eating habits as well as exercising on a regular basis.
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