A Reflection on 2020

As we enter the new year, I would like to reflect on 2020.  If I may use a catch phrase to best describe the year, it would be “thinking out of the box”.  

Indeed, the pandemic is a game changer; it forces every individual and industry to think out of the box to survive.  The conventional ways of doing things can no longer sustain; much less thrive…  No one is spared.  From the man in the street to global brands.  

As borders closed, travel came to an abrupt halt.  Passenger planes were retrofitted to become cargo jets to keep them flying, restaurants and even hawkers pivoted to online orders and deliveries, and taxi and grab drivers with no tourists or locals to pick up turned to delivering food orders to sustain their income.  Every enterprise and enterprising individual had to think out of the box.

I had been teaching for almost a decade.  And in all these years that I have taught, lessons were conducted physically – either in a classroom or at students’ premises.  Online lessons were never an option; either because of concerns over efficacy, quality of content and the likes.  The pandemic was no exception for me.  All physical lessons had to stop indefinitely… Suddenly what used to be ‘radical’ to me – online lesson was the only way to keep my lessons going.

Embarking on a new platform, I realise all my concerns are unfounded.  Online lessons not only takes away the time commute, time saving also leads to more productivity, lessons can be recorded and reviewed anytime by students and parents, the level of engagement is no different from physical lessons and quality of delivery is not at all compromised.  In short, it’s effective and efficient.  Thinking out of the box has opened more opportunities for me.   The episode was a blessing in disguise indeed.  

We don’t know what 2021 has in store for us.  But we do know that surviving 2020 has made us stronger, wiser and more resilient to deal with what comes in 2021.