When all this ends what will you be doing differently?

Apoorva Addepalli
4 min readApr 27, 2020


Are you still going to be doing ZOOM workouts with your friends?

Courtsey of givingcompass.org

Time goes a lot slower these days (nothing new here…), but slow enough to help each one of us get more introspective. Never in my wildest dreams did I think that going to the grocery store would be a “break from the routine”. And yet, here we are, sitting at home, left to toy with past memories to re-energize and live in anticipation of what an ideal future looks like.

A common undertone in most of my conversations with my friends is “My mind is running faster than the speed of Usain Bolt and I NEED to keep myself occupied” or the polar opposite “I’m bored and my patience is past the saturation point”. But the one that always gets me is “I CANNOT WAIT for this to get over so that I can finally get back into my natural swing of things!”…. I mean sure, it would be nice to SEE people and all, but I don’t think things will ever go back to the normal you “used” to know.

In the quest of figuring out a new normal, we’ve all got this excess amount of hours per day. Be it utilizing that time to chat more with your friends or banking those extra hours of sleep (or Netflix!) or pursuing your passion projects- its a moments of rejoicing time we once never had thanks to the never ending rat race! Truth be told, my new normal is legit going straight from bed to my make-shift work station (on my handy dandy couch), outfit rotating between the same 3 pairs of PJ’s I own, work-eat-work out- eat more- read a book/chat with the fam-watch TV-eat more- sleep..and repeattt!

I have a new found appreciation for less is more and also the joy in connectivity. Little things like cooking meals at home, fostering relationships with my family better than I have before and thriving on the strength of how ZOOM workouts can get my friends and I closer. There is power in “virtual association” and that’s bringing me solitude. That’s helping me combat the pang of loneliness and withering out my insecurities. And weirdly enough, has contributed positively to my mental health, because there is finally a bloom in building empathy, among my entire crew at least, in this currently fractured world!

I feel the need to continue embedding all these new habits in my life forever, without ever hitting pause.

BUT I have to admit, I am scared. Scared that this will all end in a second too, just like our past “normal” ended with a shelter in place. I am scared that despite all these new realizations, when this all ends and the outside world is up and running, we might not learn our lesson. There is a high possibility that human greed and FOMO can pop back in again and we will all be back to chasing $$$$ bills, material things and forget the importance of how little we need to be happy. We’ve taken every living breath for granted, and THIS is a wake up call for us humans!

Which leads me to- What have you learned from this brief period that you want to incorporate in your life when this lockdown is lifted? What are you going to do differently, for history keeps repeating itself SO MANY TIMES in the form of outbreaks and yet we continue going about our lives like nothing has changed. I could write pages of how we all “talk the talk”, but what’s the point if we don’t walk the walk when things come back to speed?

Are you going to be less materialistic? Are you truly going to appreciate moments with your friends and family more? Are you going to go out partying but with a heightened sense of awareness? Are you going to take things less granted and count your blessings? Are you going to be in the line of service/ spread positivity by continue being emphatic?

All you have to know is that your decisions moving forward weighs a ton in deciding the future course for you and will 100% impact the people around you and maybe even trickle down to generations after you.

Soooo… here I am, yet again, asking you and pushing you to think about(and eventually act on)- “WHEN ALL THIS ENDS, WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO DIFFERENTLY?!”