Top 5 Life Lessons the Pandemic Taught Me
Have you taken the time to figure out what life lessons you’ve learned during the COVID-19 pandemic? MaJhane shares the top 5 life lessons the pandemic has taught her. If you are interested in the transcribed version of this episode, click here. If you want to stay updated be sure to check out this page!
Top 5 Life Lessons the Pandemic Taught Me
The COVID-19 pandemic really did a number on us all. I figured what better way to reflect on this past year in quarantine than to come up with a list of things I learned about myself during this time. I have always been known to find a lesson out of everything, heck that’s what this podcast is about, but there is so much to be said about this pandemic and all the mini-lessons there are to be learned. Join me as I talk you through the things I learned in this time.
Life lesson 1: Time spent with self is necessary
I started the COVID-19 pandemic like most people; excited for the extra time off but also a little confused and concerned with how I would survive without going to work. I was in an especially peculiar situation because my job never fired me. Instead, my job put on my coworkers and me furlough, which is a fancy way of saying I’m still employed but not receiving any hours to work. With that being said, I still had to apply for unemployment which was its own situation. I never had to file for unemployment before, but thankfully, my job put me on furlough before unemployment rates skyrocket, which made it easier for me to sign up. According to an article published by KPBS back in May 2020, 38.6 million people filed for unemployment during that time, whereas now we are starting to see a slow decline. It’s still safe to say that becoming unemployed really did a number on us all.
Not only was I dealing with financial instability, but I was also plagued with a broken heart and a need to feel something. I started the year 2020, partying hard and making decisions that put me in a serious downward spiral, all in the name of heartbreak. In the back of my mind, I knew that acting out and doing all the wrong things weren’t the way to go, but I didn’t want to be rational. It wasn’t until the “Stay at Home” Order issued by California Governor Gavin Newsom that I had no choice but to sit down and face my feelings. This made the first three months of the pandemic extra difficult for me since I spent most of my days alone. Looking back, I see how beneficial that time was for me, and I’m thankful for that divine intervention that got me to stay put long enough to sort out my emotions in a safe way.
Facing my heartbreak head-on also led me to relearn how to love myself healthily. In my last relationship, I completely lost sight of tending to myself. I was so focused on my partner that I didn’t offer that same energy to myself, even though I worked really hard to get to before the relationship. This ended up backfiring. After all, when we officially ended, I didn’t know how to console myself because I spent over a year catering to someone else. I felt like a stranger to myself, and I wouldn’t say I liked it. But at the end of the day, when you’re cultivating any relationship, you have to work at it actively. Love is a verb, and if you aren’t willing to do the work, it’ll be harder to have.
Life Lesson 2: Take a step back from a situation to see the full picture
Please don’t sleep on the importance of taking a step back! I know sometimes things can get a little hectic, and it’s easy to forget to breathe most of my days; pre-covid consisted of things like that. Back then, I was working like crazy, so the main people I saw were my coworkers. Since I would sleep, wake up, work, go home, sleep, and repeat on a cycle, I started to notice things at work that I wasn’t fond of. I started to have these feelings of resentment and jealousy toward my co-workers, who became super close, leaving me out of the picture. I started to feel slighted because I felt like no one at my job appreciated me. I was always making people laugh, assisting them with recipes if they needed help, and really trying to be liked by a lot of them. I wasn’t aware at the time, but my codependency AND my ego were apparently working overtime as well.
My codependency issues were my head’s thoughts trying to find new ways to get my coworkers to like me. While my ego was going a mile a minute talking and thinking about all the ways that I’m so amazing and how my co-workers are missing out. I was pissed, jealous, and insecure about the whole situation. It wasn’t until the pandemic hit where I spent that time with myself and realized I didn’t actually care that much.
It’s easy to feel such strong feelings about people you see every day. But once you take that step back and allow that energy some space, it helps highlight the things that actually matter to you. I wanted to love and attention because my codependency and ego were starving for it. However, those things are not me. They are reactionary feelings due to my lack of addressing internal emotions. This year of the pandemic really showed me that I was putting too much of my time, emotion, and energy into things that, in hindsight, didn’t feed my soul in the way that it needed to. So if anything, that should have just been an indicator for me to redirect my attention and my energy into things that fed me more spiritually and mentally.
I learned that jealousy and resentment were based on my codependency issues and my ego. I have been spending a lot of time working on not allowing my ego to win most of the battles that I have internally; part of that work is taking a step back, reassessing the situation, and asking myself at the end of the day, “what really truly matters? Who feeds my soul? What makes me feel good inside?” The pandemic has helped to highlight the answers to that question for me.
Life Lesson 3: Mercury Retrograde is lowkey the professor you never asked for
Did you know that we are tested on the lessons that we should’ve learned when we are in retrograde? I had no idea what the retrograde was about; I still kind of don’t, to be honest, but it wasn’t until I came across a Tik Tok video, of course, that simplified it for me. The person in the Tik Tok video said that retrograde is basically your teacher giving you an exam. So when we’re in retrograde, the universe is throwing “exam problems” at us that we should have learned throughout the season to see if we’ve really been studying and doing the work. This is why exes tend to come back into the picture, or you feel like you’re repeating the same thing over and over in your life. Thank the universe for trying to test to see if you really did learn your lesson!
At least, this is how I now understand what the Mercury retrograde is about. If I’m wrong, please don’t tell me because I finally feel like I’m starting to understand this world we’re living in. If you choose to accept my definition of retrograde, buckle up and prepare for the ride! Once retrograde is over, then you can review your work, reassess, and plan your manifestations and intentions accordingly.
Life Lesson 4: It’s okay to meet people where they are at
This lesson can be translated into many different ways, but it boils down to the idea that it’s okay to meet people where they’re at. For starters, don’t guilt your friends into thinking they’re bad friends because they didn’t check on you as often as you would have liked. WE ARE IN A PANDEMIC! I know most of us are used to living in times of peril, but that still doesn’t mean you should expect the usual from friends when we are all going through unusual living situations right now. This pandemic was tough for many people, so for you to say, “If you didn’t check on me during this time, you suck” really shows that you are the one that sucks. Keep in mind that living in a pandemic is a high-stress-level situation that not everyone can handle. It takes a level of balance that isn’t in everyone. But also, you can’t be the main character of someone else’s life! It’s a beautiful thing when you are your own main character, but you shouldn’t expect to be the star in other people’s lives as well. You’re just giving in to your ego at this point.
Another way to look at this is when we talk about the idea of being “woke.” If you consider yourself to be “woke,” make sure that you aren’t shaming others for not being where you are. You have to remember that we all started somewhere. Some people have limited knowledge of certain things, and you have to be patient enough to either provide them with that information or let them find it independently. Still, you can’t be mad at somebody for not being where you are mentally or spiritually if they don’t have the necessary tools. There is a difference between willful ignorance and being unaware, and I am referring to the latter. I personally feel this way with the concept of the ego. Now that I’m hyper-aware of my ego, it’s not only easier to clock it for myself but also for other people. If someone asks for my opinion, I have to find ways to meet them where they’re at so I don’t sound obnoxious.
Life Lesson 5: Things will never be the same post-pandemic
Lastly, I learned is that things will never be the same as pre-COVID, and that’s okay. Once we can leave our houses and do things, it will be different, so start rearranging your expectations up now. Concerts, venues, theme parks, etc., are all going to look different since COVID will be looming over our heads for years to come. My only advice is to focus on creating new memories instead of recreating old ones. Have you ever tried to recreate a memory? I had when I was younger, and it’s really hard, almost impossible. I think being able to create memories with your loved ones with the year we’ve had is more than enough to satiate any cravings of wanting to recreate a memory. At the end of the day, try your best to roll with the punches just like we’ve been doing during this pandemic. So honestly, nothing new.
The challenge for this week is to reflect on the life lessons the pandemic has taught you. I know I can’t be the only that has learned something beneficial during this time. Whenever you figure out what those lessons may be, make sure you give yourself kudos for the growth! If you’re in an area that isn’t open to the public yet when that time comes, please remember to manage your post-pandemic expectations because things will not be like how they were before, and thats okay!
If you find this information helpful, be sure to check out my other posts! Until we meet again, please be kind to one another, and from the bottom of my heart, I love you.