July 9, 2020

10 Positive Experiences From a COVID-19 Lockdown

Because we are inundated by the many negatives related to this pandemic daily, I decided to rather highlight some positive experiences… So, if you were looking for more politics or more negativity, you’ll be sure to find it – but you can close this page now. 

For those who are open to some positive news: the below is by no means a complete list, but rather just a few personal positive experiences. 

Most of us can work from home

Technology has advanced immensely. Gone are the days of trying to use a home telephone line and an analogue modem to connect into a corporate network after receiving a beep on the support pager. We now have fiber, cell phones, VPN connections, and laptops with the latest security encryptions which enables us to do everything we need from home. 

The best part is dreaming about future possibilities. What if you could continue to work from home, but your home moves to a cottage in the mountains, far away from the busy city life? It does not seem that far-fetched anymore, does it? 

Video conferencing software works well

Before lockdown, I really hated video conference calls from one meeting room to another. Even worse…. a voice conference call. It just never seemed to work well. The person sitting the furthest away from the microphone would never be heard and when the person closest to the mic put their pen down on the table… it sounded like an explosion interrupting conversation for at least 4 seconds!

Video conferencing actually works very well when each participant has their own camera, speakers – or headset – and microphone. 

Less strain on corporate networks

It might just be my perception, but I’ve noticed less strain and interruptions on corporate networks when fewer people are on the internal network. This is really good for the systems that service the business. Stability = Productivity. 

New business opportunities for old businesses

Yup, some businesses are thriving, and some are barely surviving, but it’s always good to look for new opportunities, given new circumstances. I’ve read so many articles on how some businesses are tweaking their operations to morph into renewed businesses. One should never just accept any forecasted fate. Rather keep reinventing new ways to stay afloat or create other revenue streams. 

Company savings on generic staff expenses

It’s been quite a while since I’ve signed off a purchase order for toilet paper, stationery, coffee, milk, etc. I wonder at what point staff might approach management to report that their living expenses at home have increased dramatically. Perhaps companies might have to look at WFH allowance? (To Sintrex staff reading this: No – you cannot request this, kindly move on to the next point to see where you’re saving!)

Personal savings on travel

Yup, here you go. Most of us have a long-distance or high traffic commute to and from the office. I used to fill up my car weekly. I’m now on a tank a month. If you do a few mathematical calculations on your local supermarkets’ home delivery fees versus your lockdown travel expenses, it might be worth your while to just order everything for delivery. This lessens your risk of COVID exposure too. 

If you’re unlucky and don’t fall within a delivery radius, consider selling your car and buying a delivery scooter. Then offer delivery services to your neighbours, make a fortune and retire young! Ok, not really, but do the math and keep dreaming…

Environmental improvements due to the lowered carbon footprint per person

It’s as if nature has been allowed to take a deep breath with less pressure on our ecosystems. There are countless environmental improvements, which is a huge collective positive, as it’s so difficult to make a difference in this regard as an individual. Let’s hope that it continues and helps us focus more on preserving nature and its resources. 

Everybody seems to be going the extra mile

Is it just me, or has everyone else noticed that people are stepping up to prove their worth? It’s as if nothing is a ‘given’ anymore and everyone is showing their worth by contributing more and taking ownership of what needs to get done. 

Home DIY projects

This might not be true for all, but since I’ve spent more time at home, I’ve become a lot more aware of those little things that just need to get done. Saving 2 to 3 hours of travel daily gives me time to fix lights in a room or re-varnish a table. It’s little things, but they give me a huge sense of accomplishment and pride. Maybe when we’re back at the office we should all contribute to the maintenance of the office? I wonder if we’d feel more pride sitting in an office that we helped paint. Sounds like a social experiment worth conducting. 😉 

Appreciation for what we have

Many are suffering through ill health or uncontrolled circumstances, but I can also see that those who do get the opportunity to work, hold on to work and give their all. Those who receive grants and those who have the opportunity to be among the support structures of their loved ones, seem to be very grateful. It’s as if we are so uncertain of the future, that we are just happy embracing any positives right now. 

Outro

Yes, there is a lot of uncertainty and controversy. 

Yes, there is loss and tragedy and corruption and negativity.

Yes, many things are beyond our control, but – like all things – this too shall pass. 

We cannot foresee the impact or lack thereof, therefore we should do our best to look for the opportunities and stay positive.

Emile Biagio

Sintrex

Sintrex