“This pandemic has changed us for the better.”
This unexpected shock statement from one of West Asia’s most respected physicians taking a short break from the battlefront of the COVID-19 pandemic jolted me into a new way of thinking about the epic uncertainty we face in our world today.
The endless uncertain days of the global pandemic lockdown have brought us respite in at least one sense: a clear space to think. Away from the hustle of the marketplace and the endless need to stay digitally connected, a new space of thoughtful reflection has emerged. A more caring & connected world seeking new community experiences has emerged in these nascent years of a new decade.
And all because we’ve somehow created a space between our thoughts.
The journals of the past have made a comeback. Palettes and easels have discovered great days of expression on canvas and other mediums. Dusty banjos, guitars and ukuleles have been restrung. Slumbering pianos and keyboards welcome resonant notes of live music into our lives. Spirituality in sacred spaces have found a new spaces of expression and relevance in this time. Poetry and lyrical prowess has swirled out of dimming pages to find artistic expression on online forums. In the quieting whirr of lockdown life, we’ve all discovered the gift of thinking clearer than ever.
Community giveaways are now a way of life. The focus has shifted to what we can achieve as communities wherever we are. This confluence of caring and technology have led to a sharing spirit that is unparalleled in human history.
Community is the driving force of change and transformation in the decade to come.
Here is why the Good Doctor felt that “This pandemic has changed us for the better.” He observed the transformation amidst the medical fraternity of the world.
For one, he explained, the medical fraternity around the world began to share information freely in the race to find the vaccine that will fight the virus. Information about the virus was freely exchanged between the notoriously secretive healthcare industry.
Second, medical societies around the world dropped their high conference admission fees running into thousands of dollars, making their virtual conferences virtually free overnight. Doctors, nurses, specialists could now access these conferences learning quickly about the pandemic and helping speed up the race toward a vaccine.
Third, medical healthcare has changed forever with ‘Virtual Consulting’. A patient needs to visit a hospital only in case of an emergency. Doctors today are asking patients to stay at home with virtual consultations that can be handled at home. The medical profession that was reluctant to conduct virtual consultations now insists on it knowing that patients are safer for it.
The result: the fastest development of a vaccine to fight a global pandemic.
For the first time in living history, a global pharma leader shared its vaccine formula for free with the Serum Institute to mass produce the COVID-19 vaccine so that it can cover the world population as soon as possible.
This new way of thinking has come out of meeting this time of adversity and challenge with resilience and human ingenuity. It is born of the unfettered space between our thoughts. To leaders and catalysts who make this change happen, here are three insights that will be useful for the journey ahead:
— Focus on your message and build timely themes for your communities
— Tap into your community’s cadence of change & transformation
— Calibrate the results so that the benefit of one is the benefit of all
Finally, as Khalil Gibran told us, “Let there be spaces in your togetherness”
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