This is an interesting question. How indeed has it changed us, namely me?
First above all it has made me think seriously about my own health and how if indeed I was unfortunate to contract this deadly virus.
Having a compromised immune system, it would put me into the serious category of survival. Hence taking all the precautions that where necessary to ensure that I don’t leave myself vulnerable to this deadly virus.
Living on the Mid North Coast we have basically had minimal cases of the virus, which is surprising as we are a tourist destination, between two major cities Sydney and Brisbane.
There has been a certain benefit that has come out of the pandemic for me. It has allowed me to concentrate on my finances. Having gone through complete lockdown across New South Wales has taught me valuable money lessons that will benefit me in the future, including researching and installing solar on the roof and replacing old fans with ecological reduction fans.
Not being able to attend any entertainment, including catching up with friends for that coffee, lunch or dinner has enabled me to save money. I have also questioned my needs versus wants at the checkout and basically asked myself “do I really need that top, skirt or shoes”.
As much as I like to travel, this was also affected. Again another question I posed on myself, would I really like to travel to locations that didn’t have control on the virus? Certainly not! No travelling gave me another opportunity for savings.
During the early stages of COVID-19 a writer colleague asked if I would be interested in taking up a board position on the newly formed Mid North Coast Writer’s Centre. I accepted with pleasure, as the nearest writer’s centres are located in Byron Bay and Newcastle. The writer’s centre was Officially Launched by the Mayor on 3rd September in Port Macquarie.
If you are in lock down and you don’t want to get bored, there are just so many hours one can spend on cleaning out cupboards before you realise, this is not for me, I am bored.
I, together with many thousands of others saw the benefits of online Zoom webinars. At first I registered for almost everything that I came across, until I realised there must be a real benefit for me to listen to presenters, who in some instances were dreadful at presenting online. I became weary of the various companies offering these Zoom webinars. Taking the time to research the type on online knowledge I wanted to endue became a priority.
It was at this stage that OWN NSW was alerted to me by one of my colleagues, who at that time we were collectively researching information about older women in our LGA.
The statistics in Coffs Harbour LGA for older women aged 45 to 80 is enormous with over 17,000 recorded by ABS in 2016. This represents 24% of the total population of Coffs Harbour LGA.
We realised, together with two other businesswomen that there was an opportunity to commence a Coffs Harbour Older Women’s Network Group.
Discussions occurred with OWN NSW in August 2020 and on 17th November 2020 the Mayor Denise Knight Officially Launched, socially distanced of course, Coffs Harbour Older Women’s Network Group. https://ownnsw.org.au/get-involved/join-group/coffs-harbour/
How has the pandemic changed me? I value my health, gained valuable money lessons to save money, question myself about do I need that? And most importantly there are always opportunities out there even in a pandemic.