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Faith In Humanity Restored: Thoughtfulness During A Pandemic


The world is facing an entirely new reality because of coronavirus, and it’s one that at times can feel daunting. With so much flooding our minds, the anxiety and fear can sometimes feel overwhelming. Amidst the spread of the novel coronavirus and cities around the world shutting down, good news seems to hit differently these days. Yet, on this other side of darkness, the world has also had the chance to witness immense acts of thoughtfulness in a pandemic.

Before jumping into the ways in which you can display thoughtfulness and some examples of how people are helping each other, let’s remember some important facts. During these uncertain times, it’s good to remind yourself that:

  • Scientists, researchers, and doctors are working on a cure and vaccine
  • The majority of people are recovering from COVID-19
  • Every person who stays at home and practices social distancing is playing a major part in slowing the spread of disease
  • Creatives, artists, and businesses are connecting in new ways to people around the world
  • People are coming together to help their communities and those on the frontlines
Friends talking to one another with masks and from a distance
Photo by Kate Trifo on Unsplash

How To Demonstrate Thoughtfulness In A Pandemic

Regardless of the circumstance in which you find yourself during this pandemic, you can play a part in spreading positivity and helping the world overcome this challenge.

Some ways to remain thoughtful for both yourself and others include:

  • Listen to others and allow people close to you to voice their concerns
  • Take time to care for yourself and disconnect from the news
  • Be thoughtful and consider the validity of information you hear before sharing it
  • Be kind and empathetic to those in need
  • Do what you can
  • Ask for help when you need it
  • Take it easy — this is new for everyone and no one really has all the answers so practice self-compassion

What Comes Out In A Pandemic

Dark times reveal character. They can shine a light on what has or hasn’t been working within a society. The things that are outside of our control may also offer insight as to what is within our control.

This could spark new modes of creativity or the urge to take charge of to-do’s that we’ve otherwise procrastinated. Along with the productivity aspect of being in a lockdown during a pandemic, this pandemic has also shed light on the following major societal elements:

1. The Value Of Life

Above all, we are trying to protect life. While this means every person has had to make some sort of sacrifice, we can see how the paramount concern is survival. This is a truth regardless of one’s socioeconomic level, race, gender, education level, or any other way the world may choose to categorize its people.

2. Human Rights

Along with the value of human life, we are coming to realize all the ways in which access to healthcare and inherent human rights are around the world and within smaller communities. Like education, adequate healthcare should be considered a basic human right.

3. Treating The Poor And Vulnerable

When this virus first hit, the data seemed to show that the elderly were more at risk. Additionally, it’s a fact that those with compromised immune systems are more vulnerable to complex complications and death at the hands of COVID-19. As such, there have been acts of kindness that show how people rally together to protect those most in need. Grocery stores have created earlier opening hours reserved for those who are vulnerable and immunosuppressed. Teenagers in communities are banding together to deliver groceries to their elderly neighbors.

4. Solidarity And Common Good

For the first time in many of our collective memories, everyone is facing a common (yet invisible) enemy. This has brought people together in unexpected ways. From Italians singing together on balconies to buildings lit up with flags from around the world, people are coming together to support one another.

Stay home road sign 
Photo by LOGAN WEAVER on Unsplash

Ways To Help People During A Pandemic

While it may not seem like much, every small deed can go a long way. This may come in the form of helping peers learn online to checking in with friends or relatives on FaceTime.

Here are some ways to help people from the comfort of your own home:

1. Virtual Hangouts

Consider putting together virtual hangout sessions with friends or family. This can help people from feeling isolated during these times. You can try a video conferencing app like Zoom, which during this time is offering their service for free.

2. Support Local Businesses

While you should stay indoors until your government tells you otherwise, you can still support local businesses by doing contactless pick-up of food or materials.

3. Ask People If You Can Help Them

Many people are prideful or nervous to ask for help. However, they may really need it. Be sure to check in with the people you love and ask them if there’s anything you can do to help them.

4. Avoid Spreading Misinformation

Something that is really important but easily overlooked is the spread of misinformation. In today’s digitally connected world, it’s easy to spread fake news without realizing it. Every person can take responsibility to check the credibility of their sources before sharing it across social media or with their circle.

5. Increase Communication

A lot of people have had to shift their workspace to home. While it’s easier for some than others, it’s a good practice to overly communicate with your team and managers during this time. By doing something as simple as sending weekly progress reports to your manager, you can alleviate a lot of their stress without them even having to ask.

6. Share Your Needs And Ask For Help

In the same vein as asking others if you can help them, be open to sharing your needs and asking for help. This is a time where people can come together and be stronger in numbers, even if we are socially distant from one another. Every person has a skill and talent that can be useful to another in this time of need.

7. Remember We Are Together

Lastly and importantly, take care of your mental health. Practice stress-relieving tips and take time to exercise (indoors, if possible). When your mind wanders into a path of negative thoughts, try to think about how we are all in this together. Then, reach out to someone you trust to talk or ask for help.

8. Volunteer Virtually

While it’s not a time to be close to people in proximity, you can still lend a helping hand virtually. There are so many ways to get involved with organizations and provide help virtually. From offering online tutoring to transcribing historical documents, now is a great time to volunteer from home!

Importance Of Thoughtfulness From Educators During A Pandemic

Our world is leaning heavily on certain professions at this time. From the government to doctors and first responders, we are relying on systems bigger than us to help us survive. In the same vein, educators have increased their role as their work with students via distance learning and online schooling.

For some educators and students, like those who attend the University of the People, this is business as usual. The online nature of our higher education programs means that people can still safely and securely earn their degrees.

But, for others, this is a totally new situation which can be overwhelming for both students and teachers. As an educator during this time, try to do the following for students:

  • Communicate with them and answer questions
  • Repeat some lessons for those who are having trouble understanding
  • Use optimistic language
  • Consider creating a discussion board so students can still socialize with peers
  • Promote group assignments and projects that can be done collaboratively and digitally
  • Take meditation and stretch breaks
  • Ask your students individually or collectively how they are feeling and if there’s anything you can do to help them

Examples Of Goodness: Restoring Hope In Humanity

On the bright side, there are many examples of how humans have been helping one another during this pandemic. Some of these include:

  • Restaurant owners selling food to raise money for employees
  • Neighbors bringing newspapers to the door of disabled residents
  • Loved ones who are taking on entire family businesses so that their significant others can stay safe inside.
  • Hotels opening their doors free of charge for healthcare workers (and also homeless people)

The Bottom Line

Coronavirus has changed the world dramatically. There’s an eerie sense of so much unknown flowing through the air and our minds during this time. Yet, despite all the worries and negative effects of this pandemic, there’s been a new layer of restored hope through the displays of thoughtfulness on behalf of people. On every level, from individuals to organizations, people are driving the world forward through their acts of goodness. You can be a part of the movement, too!

University of the People