Imagining Life beyond Covid-19, Will There Be a New Normal?
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By Mathias Yawlui

A lethal pathogen called COVID-19 is lurking everywhere. It is causing illness and deaths. Those who can, have been living behind closed doors to the extent possible. The unfolding Covid-19 crisis will be a world historical event, with profound political, economic and social consequences.

Working out of home has become the new normal. Nobody could have imagined such a scenario a few months ago. Today, it is a reality we have reluctantly accepted as life goes on.

Let’s face it then.

We must learn to live with the mysterious microbe and its kiss of distress. We must accept that millions will get infected. Life before, during and after COVID-19 will be affected greatly in this regard. 

Before COVID-19

Life before this lethal pathogen came was as normal as it can get. We were interconnected with our friends, neighbours, family and even strangers. People did not care too much about washing of hands after alighting from public transport. You can shake hands with anyone and don’t bother if your friends had just used the place of convenience or not. Life was without any strict measures like wearing nose mask to populated areas, using hand sanitizers, washing of hands and keeping a distance of 6 feet away from people if possible. Life was great with absolutely to worry about, maybe the only thing to worry about is not crushing into anybody’s car. 

During COVID-19

December 2019, scientists identified a novel coronavirus (COVID-2019) that was associated with an outbreak of pneumonia in Wuhan, China, and that was suspected of being zoonotic in origin. In a matter of weeks, over 100,000 of cases and thousands of deaths were confirmed globally, with numbers rapidly increasing daily. The COVID-19 pandemic has unleashed changes that seemed unthinkable just a few months ago. In February 2020, it seemed unthinkable the entire white-collar workforce of many countries would soon be working solely from home. It seemed unthinkable air travel would nose dive by 96%. It seemed unthinkable millions of migrant workers in India would be forced to undertake a herculean evacuation, walking thousands of miles to their home villages. Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is the only equipment the SARS-COV 2 understands, without these precautions, you might be the next to sleep under a respirator. You have to keep 6 feet apart from anyone, wear your nose mark when you step out, use a hand sanitizer periodically, and wash your hands as frequent as possible to stay alive. 

After COVID-19

The aftermath of the Coronavirus is not going to be the same as before the virus but it will expose man to a lot of opportunities from working virtually. A lot of white collar jobs have adopted the online way of working, which in some cases are very effective. Children can learn from home, groceries can be delivered to your doors step with stress, E-payment options have also been improved to facilitate the fast movement of money. After Coronavirus will be a whole world full of modern diversities and countless online opportunities. 

Is there hope for a new normal?

We are all in distress trying to believe and hope that a new normal awaits us as this dangerous virus passes away. There will definitely be a new normal, but it will be based on the ability of the economy of a particular country to withstand the pressure. 

Post Coronavirus there will be an increase in small gatherings with friends at home, with people opting to cook in order to manage their food as well as prioritizing close friends and loved ones over mass gatherings. Restaurants globally are digitizing their offering where possible to keep customers engaged as well as offering delivery service meal kits and online cooking classes.

Economist from different parts of the word have stated emphatically that the private sector will need a miracle to survive, especially Small and mid-size enterprises (SMEs). These companies will, if not already lay off most of their employees just to make way for other necessary things. This will result in high employment rates across developing countries.

COVID-19 has played a major role in the lives of many entrepreneurs. Giving a lot of companies the exposure they needed in the online world. 

The pandemic is creating enormous economic and political turmoil. Unless there is an early cure, the world that will emerge seems likely to be different, in important ways, and even less co-operative and effective than the one that went into it. Yet this need not be the case. We have choices. We can always make the right ones.

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