Hello 2021

blue background with "hello 2021" written in white writing and 5 gold stars underneath

Finding the silver linings.

So the start of 2021 brings upon the UK another national lockdown.

However, as a new year brings hope of eventual brighter times ahead with the mass roll-out of two coronavirus vaccines, it’s important that we don’t let the pandemic overshadow the some of the positives of the previous year.

Resilience

Humanity has proven once again just how resilient we are to change. For many of us, our entire worlds were turned upside down, our daily routines interrupted, and our freedoms hindered.

But despite this, we were able to adapt and evolve into a society which behaves in an entirely different way than it did just 10 months ago.

The majority of the population has taken this threat seriously and followed the rules, and in reward, we are now beginning to see a (very) small light at the end of the tunnel.

It’s small, and still just out of reach, but it’s there.

The environment

There is absolutely no doubt that the “Stay at Home” message has had a major effect on our carbon footprints. With large parts of the world in lockdown, greenhouse gas emissions have been lowered and the levels of nitrogen dioxide have dramatically decreased.

There were reports of dolphins in the Venice canals and blue skies in Delhi.

The slowdown of social and economic activities has not only improved air pollution but water and noise pollution too. – This academic article highlights exactly how this happened. Read it here.

This proves that with huge efforts from mankind, we can make great moves to reverse the damaging effects of human activity on our planet.

Family time and flexible working

happy family under a blanket
Families spent more time together at home during 2020.

The introduction of a national lockdown, whether people liked it or not, forced us to spend a lot more time with the people we live with. This may not have been positive for some, but for others, these opportunities to spend quality time with their families seldom come often.

However, not only did the pandemic allow us time to spend with people at home, but it also welcomed opportunities for increased digital interaction.

Many family members who live hours and hours away from each other, which may have lost touch or don’t speak as often as they would like to, have reconnected.

Scheduled Zoom calls and Microsoft Teams parties, Skyping and Google Hangouts have become regular occurrences in our weeks.

Obviously, we yearn to be able to hug our loved ones sometime soon, but the pandemic has given people a new way of communicating which they may never have wanted to discover previously.

Many parents have been forced to home school their children, something which can be a daunting task for the qualified among us, never mind the percentage who would rather forget their school days than relive them!

But, bosses and people in positions of power have come to accept that flexible working can be a beneficial lifestyle, and also necessary where children are involved.

Remote working comes with its challenges, but companies are now being asked to create a culture where they trust their employees completely to get on with their work loyally and upstand company values without being watched.

Hygiene

It’s hard to imagine a time where the only expectations of us to wash our hands were after the toilet and before our evening meal. Now, a splodge of sanitiser is required before and after most day-to-day activities. Face masks in public places are now no reason to stare and point, but now a sign of politeness and common courtesy.

Before the pandemic, if you were to cross the road when someone was approaching you on a narrow pavement, the on comer may have been offended, now the gesture is thanked with a genuine smile.

All of these small actions have helped towards a “clean conscious” and “caremongering” society. Two of the many new words coined in 2020.

What’s next?

2020 brought with it plenty of unexpected challenges. It’s how we faced those challenges and overcame them which make us stronger.

The JudgeService team are continuing to put their best foot forward and support our clients during 2021, and we hope to have a year which continues to push us to do our best work for our community and loyal clients.

 

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