Someone asked me recently, “Despite being in lockdown and all of the craziness swirling in the world right now, there seems to be some good that’s come our way, no?”
My immediate reaction was, ‘Why just some, lots of it, I suppose’. ‘Yes’, she said, ‘this new normal is actually quite enticing. I like the idea of sitting back and relaxing – working and yet, not stressed about it … spending time with the family, with myself, with my passions and interests.’
I said, ‘There you are.’ And then I just added … Actually, this new normal is nothing but the old normal minus the technology. Take away the zoom meetings and the digital newspapers and the ubiquitous webinars and you’ll realise how we are getting an opportunity to do everything that we always craved to do in the past, when the hurly-burly of life wouldn’t just allow us to indulge in those activities.
Yes, the economy is in a tailspin, and people’s earnings have taken a major beating … because other than the Ambanis, not many are earning much,’ I chuckled. ‘Yes, the pleasures of the many things like going out for a movie or a dine-out or visit to the malls or travel or face-to-face meetings or get-togethers seem like history. But, in exchange, look at just some of the blessings that we have been gifted with and tell me if you and I didn’t always want it to be a little like that.’
A stress-free morning
At the very start, earlier, there seemed to be a mad rush for everything … even if it was going for a walk or spending time on mediation or yoga or listening to music, there was always a pressure point somewhere … the need to get ready for work, get children to school, and so on. What was somewhat of a luxury reserved only for Sundays and Holidays, is now an everyday affair. You can wake up late or early, spend a little more time on listening to music or doing mediation or walk or family chat, there is no hard stop on anything as such. Even for many of us who may have a zoom call to attend to or a deadline related presentation to work on, there is no such maddening rush as such and not always are they the very first thing in the morning.
One of the best things that the pandemic has done is to change our mental models
So, one of the best things that the pandemic has done is to change our mental models. A video meeting today is the most accepted thing. The video meetings have jumped off from just work-related meetings now to fun meetings with friends, cousins or even watching a music performance. How many times have we craved for a cousins or friends collective meeting but it just wouldn’t be possible due to the diverse places they all might be living in … and the travel and the time hassles that would come in way.
How often we have craved for having an opportunity to spend time with our loved ones at home. The new normal is therefore changing relationships … the last time that you got a chance to spend time with your spouse or parents or children was perhaps when you went to that resort or trip abroad for a holiday. And even there, everyone was busy ‘doing’ something or the other. It was a holiday but followed an itinerary that was killing and tiring. Even on weekends, it was common for someone or the other always missing from the gathering … parties, films, restaurants, visits, something or the other would pull someone out. But now, everyone is together. Can you imagine the extent to which one is getting to see and observe and know each other up-close?
Let’s face it — pandemic is changing relationships. Even people and partners who couldn’t stand each other, have accepted each other and rather, have started seeing qualities that were almost invisible, so strong was the prism of disgust and intolerance through which the other was always viewed. Prejudice, sarcasm, intolerance has started giving way for acceptance, appreciation and even fondness and love. People have started noticing the goodness inherent in the people they live with. For those who already always loved each other’s company, of course, it’s absolute bliss.
An opportunity to recalibrate your life to the old normal as the new normal
Reading, watching films, writing, developing breakthrough concepts … these are some of the things that I was keen on doing at any time but would invariably not get the time to work on them to the extent it was needed. Removing the clutter and organising them … whether at home or within your Hard Drive is yet another thing that has created so much of awareness of myself. I have found the joy of editing my life and adhere to the simplicity like never before.
If we reflect, the second quarter of 2020 has created a huge shift in perspective for all of us. When we allow ourselves to change the narrative and shift our focus to finding the positive message or meaning in something, we open ourselves up to receive more good in our lives. In all this, we are in a fortunate phase where we have the technology today to support and aid all our old normal into what is being so often talked about as the new normal.
About the Author
Brahmanand S Siingh is a National-Award filmmaker, author and speaker. Spearheading Mobius Films, he feels passionately about Music, Cinema, Literature, Entrepreneurial Spirit, Excellence, Innovation, Communication, Communication Gaps, Emotional Intelligence or the lack of it, in our daily lives. He is also a big advocate of learning how to manage Change, which in these difficult times, are only too, too relevant.
Mr. Siingh has extensively contributed thousands of articles across 30 prominent newspapers, magazines and journals and now writes regular authored articles on life, education and leadership. Known for making award- winning feature films and feature-documentaries on a range of subjects like RD Burman, Jagjit Singh, Human Trafficking & Child Labor, Backpacking travelling, Educational Excellence, Alzheimer’s & Parkinson’s and many others, he is a much sought after speaker on panels and writer across platforms.