The rapid global spread of the coronavirus COVID-19 has obviously caught us all off guard. Considering the state of development of our civilization, we’ve found ourselves in an unprecedented situation. Societies and economies worldwide are being put to a harsh test and we’re yet to see the ramifications this will have long-term. In all the turmoil, there are some rays of hope and that’s what I’d like to focus on in this post. Let’s talk about how technology can bring people closer together in tough times.
Before I go any further, I want to take a moment, and you should too, to appreciate all the people on the frontline of the fight against COVID-19 – medical staff and those keeping the essential services running – thank you!
Now, if you’re currently working from home, this may be a novel situation for you. I happen to know quite a lot about it and let me tell you, it’s has a number of perks but also many pitfalls.
It’s very important for you to preserve some sort of a routine to stay productive. If you stocked up on the necessities and you and your family are healthy, it’s very tempting to start feeling like you’re on a leave.
The situation at hand
Not having to commute to the office every day can make you actually feel good. But then you may check Twitter and suddenly your mood worsens. Following the latest news on the coronavirus pandemic can be toxic.
The regular news cycle is enough to make people feel uncertain, anxious, and helpless. Add in a global health crisis and you end up with a drop not only in physical but mental well-being as well.
How do you stay sane and make the best out of the current situation, especially with the social distancing being practiced everywhere?
A large chunk of the population is currently working remotely and limiting their social interactions. It hasn’t been that long yet but frankly we don’t know when it’s going to end. Of the two, the latter may be particularly hard to uphold. People may start showing some sort of social withdrawal symptoms.
Well then, how do you deal with:
- Social distancing
- And create a sense of normalcy?
One of the ways of dealing with the situation at hand is by employing technology to create online communities. If you feel like you possess leader traits, you may start your own. Otherwise, you may seek to join an already existing one.
The point of online communities is to allow their members to interact with each other, preferably in real time, come closer together, build bonds, as well as deliver much needed good news and support.
This can be achieved via forums, websites, chat rooms and instant messengers.
Using technology, people can be alone together, distanced, yet close. Interacting with others over the Internet is something to help you take your mind off the difficult situation.
An online community can serve as a digital cafe or a lobby for informal chatting. It can provide support to the most vulnerable individuals. Crisis can be an opportunity to meet new people and build stronger bonds. A common interest will create purpose for people to keep going during a hard time.
At this point of the coronavirus crisis the best thing we can do is stay calm. Panicking, fighting over toilet paper, or spreading unconfirmed information will do nothing to help us get through this.
Some folks are working double time to keep the society functioning and deserve all the praise. Others are doing their jobs remotely and perhaps have a little more free time on their hands while abiding the social distancing strategy.
This time can and should be used productively. One of the ways you can grow is by starting or joining an online community and utilizing technology such as group chat to meet new people, build bonds, and learn something new.
Surely, there are lessons to be learned from COVID-19. It’s still too early to be talking specifics, but I believe some positive shifts in people’s mindsets will emerge. Stay put people, red light always turns to green eventually…