We obviously can't know exactly what our world is going to look like on the other side of the pandemic, but we're pretty sure of the following:
We will wash our hands a lot more than we used to. We will clean our phones more, too -- be honest, how often did you clean your phone before this? I know, me either... gross.
We'll better understand the critical importance of voting. This crisis has shown us that when we vote, we are choosing a person who makes life-or-death decisions for us and our families. Vote-by-mail, like we use here in Colorado, will likely expand, and electronic voting may finally catch on.
We will be more aware of how much we need each other -- in all aspects of our lives. Who knew you'd miss that co-worker, neighbor or casual acquaintance you never thought you really liked?
We'll be less wasteful. If you are anything like me, you've realized that we don't need to buy everything that we buy. And we don't need to use as much of what we do need (I'm looking at you, toilet paper and paper towels).
We'll be more appreciative of our health, and the value of life, and the value of employment, and the value of hand lotion -- because of all the hand washing. And how about freedom of movement? Before this, did you ever consider how wonderful it was to be able to go where you want when you want?
We'll be more careful and deliberate with our spending. And more grateful for those who work in grocery stores and deliver things to our homes (thank you all, by the way).
Salad bars may go the way of the dinosaur as will those open bowls of snacks at house parties and bars.
Some people will no doubt have found a reason to return to their faith or to consider spirituality.
The handshake will be reconsidered.
More of us will be working from home or will now have that option when we can't make it into work.
People were already fleeing big cities for the open space of the burbs --this may accelerate that trend.
Count on profound changes in the healthcare industry and not just in crisis preparedness or in our new appreciation for nurses and doctors (thank you all, by the way). We'll likely see the rise of telemedicine. Teletherapy, too. We've seen that mental health counseling is too important to ignore, and getting it online is just too convenient not to pursue.
Now that schools and students are figuring out online learning, it's hard to imagine that won't somehow be normalized into education.
A lot of us will have become aware of the importance of touch of human contact. Who could use a hug about now?
The stature of hairstylists and barbers will grow.
We will savor live sports and live music.
Bureaucracy could become more streamlined. The red tape government has cut temporarily, may prove permanently unnecessary. And as 9/11 became a recruiting tool for the U.S. armed forces, this could be a call to arms for careers in science and medicine.
This period of fear and quarantine has acted as a mirror, allowing us to really examine our lives. And we've seen that the simple things in life are the most important... just like mom said.
Family, friendship, affection, health, employment.
Plato said, "The unexamined life is not worth living." After this examination, think of how worth living our lives will be.