5 Things I love & Hate In The New Normal
It’s been awhile since COVID-19 has affected us.
I can say with the circumstances, life has probably changed forever for everyone as we adapt to the new normal.
Things that we never knew before the pandemic like trace together or social distancing are now things we use and do on a daily basis.
That being said, it’s a love-hate relationship because with some bads, there are some goods that actually came along as well.
Here is the list of my stuff that I both love and hate about the new normal.
What I Hate…
1. No international travel
While I’m not someone who is entirely affected by not being able to travel, there is still a part of me who still wants a short getaway either to Johor or Batam once in a while.
With cases spiking and cases resurging every once in a while, Sadly that isn’t possible anymore at least for the foreseeable future.
Not to forget the travel bubble with Hong Kong that doesn’t seem to go according to plan every time it has been announced.
It also feels like my passport is lost somewhere in my room now and that I don’t need to worry about it for now 😂
2. Dining out & Buffets
It feels like dining out is a privilege that we should cherish while we can, because it could be stopped at any time.
With the circuit breaker and the recent Phase 2 heightened alert, we weren’t able to eat out with friends or family and had to takeaway everything.
I would say it’s the experience of being able to eat out that was lost during these periods. It’s also a lot of hassle to bring home your food in order to eat as well.
Buffets are another thing that I sorely miss. While it’s mostly a la-carte and served to your table now, nothing beats the experience of walking around the buffet line and taking the food yourself (and the portion that you want).
3. Wearing Masks & Forgetting to Wear Them
Masks are now something that we take out with our keys, mobile phone, and wallets along with us as a mandatory item.
While I hate having to wear masks when I’m out now, it’s something we’ve all gotten used to by now.
With the few exceptional cases, most people that don’t wear their masks may have forgotten them like how they forgot to bring out their wallet or keys at times.
I remember an incident where I went up the bus but didn’t wear my mask until a commuter told me. After which, another commuter kindly gave me her spare mask because I had none in my bag as well.
All I can say is, definitely pack some extra masks with you in this pandemic to help yourself and people who may forget them!
4. Big events & Exhibitions
One thing I missed is being able to go to the IT fair at Suntec or Expo, and being able to just walk around to hunt for the best deals.
Concerts, exhibitions, events – these are all either postponed indefinitely or moved virtually online now. It is definitely not the same when everything is online now.
I think some of you frequently attend large scale events like concerts or events would probably be missing this as well too especially if it was your interest or passion.
Maybe not missing those ‘work conferences’ as much though…
5. Not Being Able to Meet Friends When We Want
With the rules always changing in order to protect the population, we’ll never know when we can see our friends again.
It could be a maximum of 5 pax, then 8 pax, then being unable to meet your friends physically.
Especially during the circuit breaker, it was really difficult not being able to meet or hang out with friends especially if you have been doing it weekly.
Thankfully we are in the age of information technology where voice and video calls are rampant so we’re still able to engage online. Big thanks to Zoom for this too.
What I love…
1. Work from Home
Especially for office workers, it was something that most people thought wasn’t possible before the pandemic that became a possibility.
I love working from home as much as the next person because of the flexibility of time and being in control of your environment.
Want to work in your PJs? How about a short nap in between your work time? (shh, no one has to know)
For me, I have been doing it quite a lot since I’m a freelancer. But seeing how other people who have never done it is quite amusing for me since they never knew this new-found freedom before the pandemic.
Well I guess the only exception is that you are a parent and need to manage your kids home based learning. That’s an extra challenge trying to balance everything out.
2. Less Commuting Around
With everything moving to home based, the need to travel is a lot less nowadays which means saving on transport fees and the time needed to travel.
Especially for people who travel to and back from work, that’s usually about an hour travel time for most people on average. Imagine saving 5 hours per week and putting that into something productive!
But one thing when you need to travel is that the crowd has significantly reduced too, so you don’t need to squeeze like sardines (or at least not as bad) compared to before the pandemic.
Also for drivers, there is a lot less traffic than before as well and you don’t need to worry about beating the traffic as much now, too.
3. Exploring my Home Country More
Without being able to travel overseas, I took the chance and the opportunity to explore my home country a lot more.
I have been doing more staycations and have wrote a few articles about it:
I also wrote about my experience exploring the southern islands of Singapore when it was relatively still quiet. I heard there’s a lot more people now though!
Being able to go to places like these wouldn’t be possible without the pandemic at least for me.
This really gave me a chance to see that Singapore actually has a lot of things to explore and see even though we are a really small country.
4. Social Distancing & Hygiene
One thing I definitely appreciate now is having my own personal space wherever I go as we’re used to social distance now especially when queuing up.
With all the Social Distancing Ambassadors patrolling around too, we’re sure to follow the rules to make sure people keep to this as well.
Another thing is that we’re forced to be more hygienic now with things like hand sanitizers everywhere now too.
This is a good thing because people would just openly sneeze everywhere or spit on the ground in the past, but it’s way less now because of the pandemic.
5. More Time to Improve Ourselves
The one takeaway for me from this pandemic is that I got to upgrade myself.
I personally picked up learning how to invest especially during the circuit breaker and it has helped me tremendously since.
Also another habit I took up was exercising and getting fitter, and it’s something I still do till today as well.
Before the pandemic, I always had excuses of having ‘no time’ to pursue extra time. But when the circuit breaker came last year, I suddenly had no more excuse not to do so.
With the opportunity of working from home now, we still have ample time to pursue our interests and passions that we didn’t have before.
So if you’re putting off something you want to learn, it’s definitely still not too late!
This pandemic has changed the world for sure – but it’s how you approach it and what you take out of it that counts in my opinion.
The new normal is definitely very different from before, and I don’t think that we will be going back to a time before this any more.
Most importantly is to keep moving ahead and to keep adapting no matter what. Don’t let the pandemic stop you from doing what you want for sure because we don’t know when this will end.
So what are some things that you love or hate about the pandemic and the new normal?
Terence is a freelancer who does many things including writing for blogs, investing, digital marketing, and helping out his family business.
He has been a big Circles.Life fan ever since joining the network in 2016 and has helped write for the Circles.Life blog ever since the launch. He hopes to inspire and help other people make better lifestyle choices, and help them improve their quality of their lifestyle as a result (sometimes even while saving money!).