The shifting sands of COVID-19 is something that demands a sustained approach from us. For now, COVID is here to stay…any novelty has worn off, leaving the hard yards of endurance in front of us.

I wrote these words in a blog posted 14 September 2020. Who would have imagined then that we would be coming out of a lockdown again in 2021?

The unpredictability of this Delta outbreak is taking its toll. Yes, some aspects of this lockdown are easier – there has been less panic buying, we are well used to purchasing via on-line websites and we know what to expect based on our previous experience.

On the other hand, we also well remember the pinch points, such as trying to juggle the multiple roles required of us – all at the same time.

I feel for those who are working from home, organising home-schooling, running businesses, managing staff, teaching classes, and leading from the front in so many areas. Imagine this scenario without the advances of technology – notwithstanding that, at times, using it might also cause frustration.

Managing unpredictability through crisis situations can be very challenging. The insidious Delta variant, an invisible enemy trickier than last year’s strain, is testing our resilience and perseverance.

It is also affecting our ability to plan the future

These include basic things like organising a birthday party or making an appointment, to planning travel in the future.

Recently, after travelling to Nelson to visit a friend, my sense of ‘normal’ started to return – only for it to be rocked again: the Conference I was booked into in Auckland next month was cancelled, as was a sporting event, a bi-annual eye test, a haircut. And to add insult to injury, my driver’s licence expired just before Level 4 started.  “Disruption” and “disturbance” describe well the instability and uncertainty our mind and emotions are experiencing. Add to that the actual impact on us physically.

The hope of returning to life as we knew it before the pandemic is a utopia we now appreciate more in retrospect, and something of a false hope.

It’s amazing how much I had taken for granted: seeing friends and family whenever I wanted, travelling anywhere, shopping any way I wanted, sharing social occasions and celebrations, choosing how I would learn a new skill or gain a qualification, or how I exercise.

Before Covid-19, we had a lot of options. Post-Covid, it’s a world of shifting sands. Clouding our joy of returning to the relative ‘gift’ of Level 2, is the prowling sense of, “Just one case in the South Island will result in further limitations”. All of this has an impact on our mental, physical and emotional wellbeing.

How to prepare?

Here are a few things I have found that help. I am sure you also have things you could add to this list:

  1. Lean into the change, don’t fight it.
  2. Hold things lightly.
  3. You are stronger than you think.
  4. Expect disruption.
  5. Have a plan B, C, D and… Z.
  6. Be flexible and patient.
  7. Keep your cool.
  8. Treat your family like strangers (we sometimes treat strangers better).

Having an endurance mentality is vital. The experiences of past tough times have prepared us for today’s challenges. Human contact is important for our overall wellbeing, and that of others. Let’s squeeze the best out of the situation/times we are in, while staying within our own comfort level and limits.


Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus - Philippians 4:6–7 (NIV).

(Image: Fotolia)

Published on 9 Sep 2021

Orderdate: 9 Sep 2021
Expiry: 9 Sep 2023