We get used to our creature comforts. Your favourite snack you sneak before bed, staying up a few extra hours to watch the latest show and having access to whatever you want at the touch of a button with next day delivery.
Then one day it all flips on its head. Until now, most of us have only seen it in movies. Independence Day is a great example of this. Except in our reality, it’s not aliens coming to Earth that causes a crisis but a virus that’s set out to destroy us instead.
As COVID-19 spreads rapidly around the world, and governments enforce nationwide lockdowns, the world we once knew is turning upside down. Most of us haven’t had to stay at home for anything over two to three days with a simple cold. This pandemic is an 11/10 in comparison.
This virus is resetting everyone’s baseline, we’re on the verge of a whole new era. Every single day is different, taking us down a path we’ve never thought or seen before. Pubs, shops and restaurants are closing. Basic groceries are missing for weeks on end and it has even forced even my local gym to close.
We’ve been thrown in the deep end for the safety of others and our own family. Whilst it is necessary to protect those who need the help the most, it leaves us feeling uncertain about what is next. What is to come in the next day, week or month? Because right now there is no end in sight, no deadline or goal. It could be one more day or two more years we do not know.
Who knows when the next curveball is coming our way and how it could affect us. A lack of toilet paper is annoying but, how big could things get?
With this uncertainty, I’ve been questioning what I want to do and what makes me happiest. What can I do every single day that will either improve my skills or make me a happier person on the other side of this? This period will be difficult in everyone’s lives, so why don’t I take some time to improve myself along the way.
This thought has given me more focus in my daily life. I now have something to hold on to whilst everything is exploding around me.
In times like this it’s important to maintain your routine, discipline and continue to live your life as best you can. Even when you’re not able to work and have been sent home, what could you be doing in those eight hours?
Maybe it’s time to learn a new skill, play an instrument, do a deep clean or practice meditation.
Whatever you do, don’t fall back into your bed for an extra three hours each day. These times of uncertainty are just as likely to breed depression in you as they are to bring new life to your career and world in general.
It might be comfy for the first few days but over time it’ll be harder to get out of your bed.
Only by understanding that things could get worse before they get better are we able to take every day as if it was the best we’ve ever had. We have to learn to make do with what we have and push the boundaries as much as possible.
This is not the time to be comfortable, this is the time to be disciplined and vigilant. Adaptive and innovative.
When this virus, and the fallout trailing behind it, comes knocking on your door you need to be ready for it.
In the next few weeks, I am aiming to go harder than ever before. I’ve just written a new routine, which includes trying to get up at 5am. Pushing my boundaries on learning by reading more books and auditing where I am wasting my time so I can become a better designer.
Whilst the virus might have taken away some of your freedoms, it shouldn’t stop you from maximising on what you do have. Your smallest skill could become your greatest asset when this is all over.
Being stuck at home won’t stop me. An economic downturn won’t stop me. One virus won’t stop me.
We’ve spent millennia defeating problems like this so although we’re stuck in a box for most of the day right now it doesn’t mean we can't push ourselves to be better.
We’ve got this. You’ve got this. Let’s crush it together.