Post Pandemic: Embracing Positive Changes

By Michael Charles

Throughout most of 2020 and 2021 the lives of many people in Canada and worldwide have changed forever. For some these changes have been devasting. They lost family members, friends, jobs, and businesses due to covid-19 and the lockdowns which were implemented as a means of keeping people at home and limiting the spread of the covid virus. However, for others it gave them time to reflect on the direction of their lives and make changes. Employees had the unexpected opportunity to question the real reasons they accepted the jobs or career they held. University and college students also took advantage of this time to question the reasons for their choice of courses and future careers. They suddenly had uninterrupted time to sit back and ask themselves the tough question; why?

This resulted in many individuals choosing not to return to the jobs or careers they previously embraced but to pursue other options. Because so many employees worked from home during the various lockdowns, they and in some cases their employers realized they could work just as effectively at home as being at the office. Some even professed they were more efficient and less stressed working from home. Some of the advantages in working at home versus the office were no longer having to commute which could easily be at least two to three hours per day, not having to rush to the daycare before six o’clock to pick up the children and being able to multi-task by getting home chores done while still adequately performing their office duties.

One of the hardest hit industries was the restaurant industry. Throughout the greater part of 2020 and 2021 restaurants were first not allowed to have in-door dining and when that restriction was lifted it was limited capacity seating due to social distancing of at least six feet apart and patio dining where applicable. Although some implemented or increased delivery and take-out, it was still not enough to replace the reduced revenue. This resulted in a tremendous loss of revenue. It also saw loss in staff because many employees did not return to work when they were called back and instead chose other options with higher wages and better working conditions. It was also assumed but not proven that since the payment of $500 per week they received from the Canada Emergency Relief Fund (CERB) was higher than the wages they earned at the restaurant; they chose not to return to the restaurant but continued to receive the CERB. This gave them the time to explore better financial opportunities with better working conditions. Some even started their own business.

The covid-19 pandemic has taken a toll on society not only in Canada but throughout the world. It was and to some extent still is a time of panic, fear, death, and isolation. In some cases, it brought people closer together and in other cases it resulted in people feeling isolated and alone. If you were one of the unlucky ones who caught covid and ended up in hospital with a ventilator and not being allowed any visitors, this was a lonely and frightening experience. Some of them died alone. In other cases, it brought families closer together because they were now all at home 24/7 and rediscovered the fun, they once had with each other. As an example, some families started playing music together. For the ones who took this time to find new career paths and create businesses of their own it was a defining moment in their lives. The covid-19 pandemic period of 2020 and 2021 would be a time everyone would remember for the rest of their lives.

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