The pandemic is offering us many more choices in our behaviours, to help us carve a better future


Humans, individually and collectively, often tend to get stuck in ruts and routines. That’s our nature, we try things until we find a point of comfort and then stay there.

One of the biggest potential positives of the COVID-19 pandemic is that it has broken established routines and structures, thereby giving us additional options and choices to those we perceived before.

Speaking to this point, I was recently interviewed for an interesting podcast from Defiance News, The Future of Technology: The Good, The Bad & The Orwellian. The full podcast is embedded below.

One of the themes I spoke about (starting around 10:00), which I also spoke about in a recent Mashable article, is that the enforced isolation of the pandemic has given us new ways of getting to know people and dating.

These add to our usual ways of connecting and building relationships, they don’t replace them.

I also spoke about the changing landscape of work (starting around 14:10), in which I spoke about the post-pandemic work landscape, in which rather than use rigid work models such as 9-5 in the office or completely remote work, we can choose how we combine different options to best suit employees and organizations.

Gregory Bateson, one of the most influential thinkers of the last century, put increased choice at the center of what he called an “ecology of mind“.

When our patterns of behavior lead to undesirable consequences, we need to change those patterns, yet as individuals and societies we have proven to get very stuck in those patterns.

Our patterns have certainly been disrupted. Some want to return to how things were before as soon as possible.

Yet we have been offered new choices, in how we relate, how we work, the relationship of citizens to government, and many other aspects of our lives.

That doesn’t mean these new options are necessarily better than the old ones.


The next, critical, step is to make considered choices from the increased range of behaviors that we have, and not just fall into new patterns and get stuck again.

Thie period of massive disruption is offering us new choices. It is up to us to see the breadth of the new range of possibilities, so we can make the choices that will turn our lives and societies in better directions.

Image: Jacqui 1686