Opinion: The Covid Effect and how it’s shocked me into facing my future


Reading the Sunday paper this morning, I came across an article about how Covid was so good for this particular person (who happened to be a local celebrity), in that it gave her time to slow down, to reflect, to relax and recalibrate.

My first emotion while reading this was anger because so many had lost jobs, money, resources, were stressed and the last thing they were able to do was relax, recalibrate and enjoy some quiet time and meditation was far from their mind.

While I may sound bitter, because despite appearances and my many walks (a way of coping for me) I worked hard during this time. I worked to help a community and business sector stay relevant.

I fielded many questions, I volunteered, I still did my 50sowhat work on top of this, and yes, I was lucky to still have a job, but I wasn’t one of the ‘lucky’ ones that could stay home and not work and still get paid.

I worked my ass off. I also worried about my future, my husband’s future, my family’s health and their future. I saw many people lose jobs, get harassed, lose their homes, their livelihood. It was not an easy time and still is not.

While I appreciated the ‘less busy’ city, I was aware of the fact that it meant people were not working, possibly not earning money, or less money. While I did love being able to wander around the city and selfishly have it to myself (a very surreal experience) I knew it came at a cost, a big one: people’s livelihoods.

I am not berating those who had a wonderful time chilling out, connecting with family – because I know that in this busy day and age, connections are hard to get, hard to keep and need to be cherished.

I am just staying that for those that did work and work very hard it was a challenging time.

I think for me, the Covid Effect is only just hitting me now. It has definitely made me re-evaluate my life, what I’m doing, where I’m living, where I am heading and my what is ahead of me. It has made me realise that we only get one go at this life.

I am now seeing people and situations for what they really are. It is time for change, it is time to move forward. So, for me, the realisation that the world will forever be changed, was a shock, but it was the shock I needed.

Yes, I’m still a bit miffed that someone had the luxury to laze around and enjoy a two-month break while getting paid for it, and yes, I’m bloody envious, because Covid has been a big fat pain in the ass, it’s been bloody horrible, it’s been horrific and I hated it (need to get that out!).

But I am a big believer that you should read the whole story before judging the cover. I have definitely judged the cover on the story I read this morning, and maybe there is more to it, or maybe there isn’t. I just cannot help but feel for those that had to juggle working remotely, family at home 24/7, financial stresses, those that lost loved ones and could not even see them.

Covid has, and will forever change the world, but I am determined that it will change my world in a positive way.

It has forced me out of my lethargy, shocked me into facing my future and pushed me into making plans. So, while it has been an often confusing, frustrating, heartbreaking, sad time, it has also given me the time to realise what is important, and that’s physical and mental health, family, friends, connections.

While these things have always been important to me, sometimes they get lost in the noise of everyday life.

The co-founder of 50SoWhat has been in publishing for most of her working life. She was general manager of successful boutique media publishing house in New Zealand for several years and boasts an impeccable sales, marketing and management background. When she’s not road-testing the latest cosmetic procedures, or investigating the hottest lifestyle, travel, fashion and beauty trends for over 45’s, Jo is often back home catching up with family and friends, or working on her golf swing!


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