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How will the virus change our everyday lives when it passes?

(20 Posts)
Doodledog Tue 24-Mar-20 23:53:53

I was thinking about the way that the virus might change our outlook on things after it's over, and wondered what others thought. Will we go back to the way things were, do you think, or will it bring about a shift in normality?

I'm thinking about things like whether so many people working from home will mean that they will realise that you can be efficient and productive without going into an office and commuting, and without wearing high heels or a tie, and change habits accordingly.

Will access to a garden or other outside space become much more important than having a city location without?

Will 'things' become less important when we have lived for so long without anyone being able to see what we have or how we look?

That sort of thing, rather than whether there will be more divorces, or more babies born. What do you think might change in our day to day lives and attitudes?

Txquiltz Tue 24-Mar-20 23:58:29

I hope to be more appreciative of the sheer fun of living. Oh yes, I will never look at toilet paper again without a sense of awe.

Bridie22 Wed 25-Mar-20 00:38:15

I suspect that within a year of the virus passing, humans being creatures of habit will have returned to their original ways.I hope I am wrong as it is clear that nature is enjoying the break...the air is cleaner, the water cleaner etc.

Rufus2 Wed 25-Mar-20 01:23:31

I will never look at toilet paper again without a sense of awe

Would that be before or after!? shock.

PageTurner Wed 25-Mar-20 01:46:33

Oh, Rufus, you never cease to make me laugh out loud😄😍
Keep safe and healthy!

growstuff Wed 25-Mar-20 01:58:18

I think life for many will never go back to "normal". I think Doodledog is right and many companies will question whether workers really need to be in an office. There had already been a trend to work remotely and I think that will accelerate.

In schools, it has forced many teachers to learn more about online teaching and I suspect that will continue and could revolutionise the way lessons are taught. It could mean that minority subjects could be taught in small groups from different schools. I also hope that the reason for exams, especially KS2 SATs, will be questioned. If they were to be permanently abolished, the curriculum in the last year of primary school would change.

A number of businesses, including household names, will go bankrupt. People are going to lose jobs, which might never come back. The travel industry is going to be particularly badly hit. I think people might question what they actually need. An awful lot of the economy is based on people buying stuff they really don't need.

There's going to be a fall in GDP and it's going to take years to pay back the government's debts. People will question why so many people had to suffer from austerity, as it becomes obvious that it was a sham. As the economy slowly recovers, it will be more important than ever to hold the government to account and make sure that any recovery is spread fairly.

Calendargirl Wed 25-Mar-20 06:57:45

I’d like to say it might make us stop taking everyday things for granted, but things soon get forgotten.
If it encourages people, especially younger ones, to not waste stuff, especially food, to cook more instead of relying on takeaways and ready meals, to not be so bothered about fashion, shopping, getting your nails done etc. To think about our NHS, A and E, do we really need to bother our GP’s and hospitals with minor ailments, I bet many people would have been at the doctor’s in the last few days and have managed without any ill effects.
Just live a bit simpler and more sensibly really.

Oopsadaisy3 Wed 25-Mar-20 07:01:34

I think that the Cruise industry will take a long time to get back to normal, if it ever does, memories of families trapped in windowless cabins won’t fade very quickly.
Climate activists will be hoping that fewer flights will be taken.
Sadly I think that we will quickly go back to how it was before, people will be so relieved to get back to working out of the house and others will take the holidays that were postponed.
Some companies will fold, the high streets may never recover.
I hope I’m wrong.

growstuff Wed 25-Mar-20 07:22:17

Let's not be "generational" about this! There are plenty of GNers who waste stuff, were bothered about getting their hair and nails done before the lock down, go on a number of holidays a year, blame "others" etc etc.

growstuff Wed 25-Mar-20 07:26:49

Oopsadaisy I hope you're wrong too. I think it depends who is in government in two years. Somebody is going to have to pay for all this. I think the normal targets for austerity measures will be so ground down (and possibly on the verge of civil unrest) that the current "haves" are going to be in for a big shock.

vegansrock Wed 25-Mar-20 07:38:55

Perhaps more of our gdp will be invested into health and social care.

growstuff Wed 25-Mar-20 08:10:43

I think that's wishful thinking vegansrock. Economists are predicting a possible drop in GDP of 20%. GDP isn't money to spend - it's money being spent. If Brexit ever finds its way back on the agenda, the drop is almost certainly going to be more than 20%. The government is going to have to find some way of paying off the massive debt (on top of the massive debt we already had plus the infrastructure promises made plus extra benefits for the newly unemployed), so it won't have money for cash injections into health and social care, unless it taxes - and we know that a Conservative government won't want to do that.

Gaunt47 Wed 25-Mar-20 08:32:59

I doubt very much that we will change in any fundamental way. Once the cork is out of the bottle we will revert to trashing our world.

Calendargirl Wed 25-Mar-20 09:36:44

I agree Growstuff about GN’ers also wasting stuff, worrying about hair, nails etc. I feel we all could perhaps cut down on certain shopping. Another thread is mentioning buying duvets. Perhaps I am wording this wrongly, but I wonder if we could just not bother so much about ‘stuff’.

Don’t want to be judgemental, it’s each persons right to spend their money on what they want, but at times like this, some things seem rather frivolous and a bit pointless.

And I’m not having a particular dig at the duvet thread, it’s just one that caught my eye.

eazybee Wed 25-Mar-20 10:11:44

I think there will be a big re-evaluation of our lives and our needs, but regretfully, the selfish will become more so and ensure their needs come first.
Online working will continue to develop in all areas as technology improves; it was certainly being utilised tentatively in education before the virus, but I also think social interaction will be recognised and valued more.
If we hadn't had austerity measures we would be in a far worse state financially. A lot of small businesses will go to the wall,those that were not financially viable, and hopefully the plethora of over-priced coffee shops and 'itsy bitsy' shops, run by bored housewives, will disappear.
And perhaps the rash of barely used second homes in beauty spots might return to use as homes for local people.

henetha Wed 25-Mar-20 10:50:11

I would hope that we can learn from this, although I doubt if we will. We will get back to being as greedy as ever in a very short time. But wouldn't it be wonderful if we could learn to be less wasteful, less greedy, buy less clothes, make do and mend, repair household goods instead of buying new. etc.
Before this crisis happened we were very concerned about the state of the planet. The reduction in pollution during this present crisis surely teaches us that we can achieve our aims if we all try harder to cut back on our greediness.
And maybe the time has come to reduce air travel, allowing only one holiday abroad each year per person, for instance.
Businesses are now finding that video calling is perfectly satisfactory, so let us hope they continue to use it instead of jetting abroad for the slightest discussion.
We can only hope we learn something from this disaster.

Daisymae Wed 25-Mar-20 11:41:40

I don't think that things will ever be the same. There's probably going to be a recession, if not a depression. I don't think that we are going to get off lightly.

GracesGranMK3 Wed 25-Mar-20 12:09:34

One change has already happened - we are returning to a "Big State". In fact, and please, believe me, I am whispering this quietly, it's already happened with Brexit.

This has been happening since 2016. Not under the watch of those who proposed it in order to bring more equality to life which those without wealth could not procure but under the watch of the likes of the authors of "Britannia Unchained”, a book complain of Britain’s “bloated state, high taxes and excessive regulation”.

The authors included Priti Patel - now Home Secretary, Dominic Raab - now Foreign Secretary and Liz Truss - now trade secretary and this government of the big state is led by Boris Johnson who won power for his party by backing Brexit as a chance to allow us to become a nimble nation. more like Singapore without the "red tape" of Brussels. Rarely, outside a war, has a government actually created so much red tape.

They ignored the fact that for some 40 years we had moved to a country where we have little power to intervene in markets and owned fewer industries. From 2016 and the vote for Brexit we went back to an increasing "big state" economy with the growth of some 20,000 officials, costing £6bn, in order explicitly to support the Brexit project. Add to this Mr Johnson's wish to "level up" the poorer communities, failing railway franchises and Mr Johnson's own dislike of restraint and we are already in the era of "Big State".

Now go to the end of "the virus" and add a government that has brought about a social control no liberal-conservative could have wanted. Add to that state guarantees to firms; airlines and trains that may be nationalised and car makers drafted to supply what the state needs rather than what the market will pay for. A government that has had to turn its back on an ideology that damaged so many when the reality of our existence stopped being judge by wealth and markets and had to be judged by the worth of a human being up against nature.

We must hope for the strongest of oppositions to ensure the powers the government has taken are not misused in an effort to turn back what has been seen by us all. Will self-employed workers, renters and benefit claimants believe in the old "austerity" ideology again? I doubt it. What if the trains and planes run better and more efficiently? What if people want a life, not just work and want fewer hours while we have them, and want to work in a more conducive environment - home perhaps? Depending on how long this lasts there will be some things that cannot be undone.

GracesGranMK3 Wed 25-Mar-20 12:17:27

book complain book that complained

Hithere Wed 25-Mar-20 12:49:50

Travel rules will change in a huge way.
After 9/11, the restrictions to what can be carried onboarding were implemented and almost 20 years later, they are now normal.

Maybe health checks before boarding planes? Doctors notes when somebody is sick but not contagious?

Homeschooling may also stick as the right answer for some families vs sending the kids back to school.

Maybe companies realize having offices is an unnecessary expense and telecommuting could be the answer for some sectors?

I used to value daycare so much. Now even more. Those teachers kept my kids happy, entertained and learning new things. They are heroes and certainly dont get paid enough for what they do

The online ecommerce will grow immensely. We have realized we cannot just go and do things by ourselves, we need backups to do shopping, social interaction, etc.