A Guest Post by Noah Rue
Sometimes it feels like life before COVID-19 was more dream than reality. In a few short months, this little organism that no one knew even existed this time last year has managed to infiltrate virtually every aspect of our daily lives.
Survival has meant that we’ve had to get creative, not only in how we fight the disease but also how we live our ordinary lives. All of a sudden, we’ve been forced to change the way we learn, the way we socialize, and even the way we work.
That’s not always a bad thing, however. Because, in the wake of COVID-19, millions of people are discovering new ways to earn their living, or even striking out on entirely new career paths.
If you’re looking to revitalize your work life in the face of today’s new normal, this article is for you!
One of the first things you need to do to revitalize your career, or even start a new one, in our new reality is to get creative. In the last few months, there are entire industries, as well as businesses of every size and stripe, that have survived only because they had the creativity and courage to innovate.
For example, many restaurants in the hard-hit food industry were saved from extinction only because they were able to transition quickly to curbside and delivery services. Likewise, automotive manufacturers were able to transition their massive operations to the manufacturing of ventilators in just a matter of weeks.
And not only did this end up saving the lives of patients in need, but it also ended up saving tens of thousands of jobs. In the end, what these success stories boil down to is resilience. From the restaurant industry to the automotive and everywhere in between, large and small business leaders alike were able to use critical thinking and creative problem solving to meet their goals and serve the needs of their company, their community, and their country.
Consider Your Needs
It’s not just the lockdowns that are forcing people to change the way they work. Even as states work to reopen, many workers are reluctant, or even unable, to return to on-site jobs. They may have their own health considerations that make working outside the home too much of a risk, or it may be that they live with or care for someone who’s vulnerable.
If that’s the case for you, then you have a lot of options for jobs, even careers, that can be done entirely remotely. And you don’t have to have an IT degree to do it — though that’s certainly an option!
Whatever your particular interest or skill set, there are most likely some really exciting telework options for you. This includes everything from tutoring and teaching to marketing and accounting.
On the other hand, you might not be looking for a permanent remote gig. You might have a greater need to get out into the world now, to answer the call of your neighbors in need. If your health and the health of those around you permit, you might earn some quick cash by answering the COVID call.
Because of the outbreak, there is an urgent need for people to make deliveries, to stock store shelves, and even to provide child and eldercare.
Whether you are returning to your previous job, or you’ve scored a new one, it’s important that you understand your legal rights and how the virus relates to them. For example, state and federal laws permit emergency leave for workers who become sick or who must care for a sick family member. This likely includes emergency leave for those required to go into quarantine after being exposed to the virus.
In the last few months, COVID-19 has proven itself to be a little pathogen with a lot of power. But you have power too. And that includes having the resilience and creativity to build a career that meets your needs both for today and in the post-pandemic world that someday, hopefully, sooner rather than later, will come.