By: Navreet Saini, SWE R&D India Work Group member
When will things get back to normal? – I won’t be surprised if that has been among the top trending queries on Google search over the last few months.
That’s something which almost every one of us has been looking for an answer to. It is an undeniable fact that the COVID-19 pandemic has shaken our lives all through. The schedules and plans that we used to make as if we had control of everything have been turned upside down. It has taken away every illusion of control over our lives. The loss of life and livelihood, the illness and suffering that we have seen all around has been traumatic for most of us. These have been tragically difficult times. We are in middle of a world crisis likes of which haven’t been witnessed over the last 100 years.
In these challenging and uncertain times dealing with the pandemic and unrest all around, we have all experienced some degree of stress and anxiety and many of us probably have felt fearful and hopeless at times. In these tough times, the key to survival and resilience has been in holding on to the slightest of positive things around us. To be honest, it took most of us time to identify this key and to adapt to the new way of living. Embracing the situation we are in, embracing all the changes that the pandemic brought to how we live and embracing who we are have been really very crucial for holding on strong during these times. It is important to think like an adventurer and look at the big picture. Ultimately, we will get through this and we will be better for it in the end. To be a successful adventurer, one must embrace the fact that there will be setbacks along the way. Such setbacks and challenging times push one to recognize what’s important in one’s life and what isn’t. It’s quite like a reboot. Enduring the challenge changes us. It’s up to us to ensure that change is for the better.
This month, we reached out to the young collegiate of the SWE Affiliate at Cummins College of Engineering(CCEW), Pune, India to understand on how they embraced these challenging times, adapted for the better and continued their learning as well as their pursuit of growth with this experience.
Arundhati Korlahalli, Student Representative, SWE CCEW
These trying times among other things, demanded me to work on my mental health, self-discipline and self-restraint. The pandemic is no less than a war, and these life skills –our weapons. I got a chance to introspect and break out of some bad habits and behavioral patterns I had developed in the last few stressful years and also learnt priceless lessons in faith and patience. It has been bittersweet, but, like a good medicine, made me stronger.
Khushi Sonar, President, SWE CCEW
It is undeniable that Covid-19 has completely altered our lives. I mean, who would have thought that we would be attending college from home! People say that change is the only constant thing in life and we need to embrace it because only when we do adapt, will we be able to evolve. We need to make the best of what we have. Try to find the positives in a situation by looking at it from a different perspective. Focus on the problem and try finding if not the best but a feasible solution. Instead of ignoring your troubles, call out your anxiety at the disorienting change. In times when people are desperate for ‘Some Good News’, remember to express gratitude, whether it is for your pet, or a flower blossoming in the plant you have been growing for months, or because you were able to spend time with your family. These are some of the things that helped me embrace the change and could possibly benefit others as well.
Prerna Amarnani, Administrative Head, SWE CCEW
The pandemic was indeed difficult for everyone, but if I have to talk in terms of adaptation, I think it opened a whole new world in terms of learning and knowledge for the people to explore. We found a way to do so many things within the safety of our homes. Education didn’t stop, technology evolved, work from home became a major concept and even small businesses found a way into e-commerce which was previously dominated by the major players. These things did happen before as well, but never on such a large scale. Speaking on a personal level, since I was attending college virtually, I focused a lot on self-learning and grooming my communication and people skills. Besides that, to get the utmost experience and exposure before working in the industry, I tried working in similar situations like group projects and teams like our SWE Affiliate. I tried to adapt to the online nature of things while making the most of it and keeping up with the times.
Ananya Abhay Joshi, Student Representative, SWE CCEW
The pandemic has been stressful for me as well. It was the uncertainty that worried me and left me feeling that nothing in life was under my control anymore. I learnt to cope with it by living in the present and taking things one day at a time. I took up projects, participated in contests, applied to different opportunities that kept my mind engaged in productive thoughts. Being in touch with my close friends (although virtually) kept all loneliness at bay.