National borders, offices, schools, cafes and entertainment events are closed. Some of us are spending our days at home, others working long hours on the front line, leaving little time or energy to talk with family and friends.
Yet there is a paradox: many of us are making new connections, and appreciating our interdependency with others, more than ever before. We may be reaching out to friends, family and neighbours more frequently, to check they are well and have what they need, or to say the things that we don’t usually…..just in case. Or we may be spending our time on virtual platforms which can both bring a new intimacy, as we talk with colleagues and clients from our kitchens, home offices or bedrooms, or expand us into an international community like never before.
There are also many impossible paradoxes facing society the protection and care of loved ones versus deprivation of liberty and human rights; even the air that we breathe has potentially become dangerous. Usually, we can be scared of isolation and loneliness — now we are required to be scared of contact.
We need to be able to think. Thinking capacity is lost when anxiety becomes too high, when there is too much information. Information also has to be managed so it can be digested. We need to be able to talk, so that the fear begins to make sense and takes a different shape to the big unknown.
Dr Eliat Aram, CEO, Tavistock Institute of Human Relations
This Lunchtime Talk, taking place over Zoom, provided an opportunity for partcipants to share with each, in both a large group and in smaller break-out groups, on life with Coronavirus, including:
- How has this changed our communications, with our colleagues, family, friends and acquaintances, old and new?
- How has the closure of our usual means of connection – and the opening of new ones – impacted our work, our routines, our emotions and our relationships?
- What new understandings and insights have been stirred, and what emotions, usually deeply buried, have been brought to the surface?
- Will we, our routines, our work and relationships, or the world around us, ever be the same again?
Recording of the talk
Early results from a survey we are undertaking on the impact of Covid-19 were shared, download the accompanying pdf on this page to view.