The coronavirus pandemic has caused a lot of hardship and misery across the world, with social distancing and lockdown measures causing huge disruptions in society.
People have been losing their jobs and livelihood as companies which have been forced to close begin to lay off workers to reduce expenses, while this crisis has hit the poorest sections of society the hardest, as they do not have the savings to be able to cope with a drop in their daily earnings.
In such times, it is vital that those of us who are privileged enough to be able to stay at home and continue working, do so diligently, but also at the same time, take some time out to relax and enjoy this time that has been presented to us, albeit in unfortunate fashion.
To help us out during these times, there are a number of options available to distract yourself and stay entertained. For example, a number of Malawi artists have been releasing music during this time, with a lot of it being based on COVID-19 and preventive measures to stay safe. Skeffa Chimoto, for instance, released a single on these exact lines recently, while other artists like Piksy and Phyzix have also released music to talk about the pandemic as well as raise awareness about the dangers and the symptoms of the disease. Kell Kay is also putting out a song called ‘Corona’, alongside the likes of Cash Madam, Suffix, Boy Hidden, Tay Grin, Macelba and Janta.
Most of these songs are available on the likes of Spotify and Apple Music, so it is not too difficult to find and listen to them. This is one way in which musicians can try to help during these times, using their talent to spread the dangers of the disease as well as the preventive measures to take.
Of course, music is not the only escape, with there being enough content available on online streaming platforms to pass the time easily. The likes of Netflix and Amazon Prime are stocked with some of the best TV shows and movies, so people at home can now finally binge-watch all they want. Online gaming is also another huge space, with a lot of gaming companies and providers seeing a surge in interest and purchases in the last few weeks.
A number of them are also offering game titles for free for some periods of time, ranging from a few weeks to even free altogether, and so this is the best time for erstwhile gamers who had lost their touch to get back into the grove. A similar option in the online gambling market. With physical casinos being forced to close to adhere to social distancing guidelines, real money online casino games have emerged as an attractive alternative, with a number of providers going digital and offering games online to keep customers busy and happy.
This is all in the online world, but there is lots to do offline as well. Many people have taken up new skills or hobbies during their time at home, be it cooking, music or writing, with an abundance of material available to learn from.
Online course libraries like Coursera are offering hundreds of courses across a vast spectrum of subjects for free for the next few weeks, so there is a huge opportunity to learn new skills and emerge better prepared for the world after the pandemic. Fitness is also of paramount importance, with fitness instructors also going online to provide lessons and classes for people stuck at home without equipment to still get in a workout and maintain their goals.
At the same time, it may be important to also take a step back and reflect. Meditation can be of immense help during this time, especially with all the stress around the pandemic and the economic ramifications, not to mention the health care. Reading books is also a great way to pass the time as well as improve one’s knowledge, and both these activities are immensely calming and will help people cope.
This is a very stressful time for the world, and so we must take care to stay focused and at peace as much as possible.