Is it different this time?
The Coronavirus has impacted us in ways we didn’t think were possible…
Not even in the most fanciful of movies have we seen the global populations confined to their homes like this. The speed at which the virus has infected whole countries has also been astounding. In 4 short months, we’ve gone from a couple of cases in Wuhan China to over 2.3 million all over the globe. 21% of the 750,000 closed cases have been fatal.
Given the extremes in the symptoms shown by those infected, I get the impression that these numbers are woefully underrepresented and only over the course of the next 18 months we will discover just how bad this virus has been, particularly in the developed world.
Given Australia’s recent political landscape, I have been pleasantly surprised at the way The Australian parliament has come together to address this issue. Not to be outdone, Australians have also stepped up where necessary and listened to expert recommendations on what to do and how to behave. It appears that because of these two factors, Australia will come out of this crisis much better than other countries with less decisive and caring governments.
But more significant questions are coming out of this crisis. How will our dramatic approach in dealing with the virus, change the way we live our lives once we have a vaccine? There is often a moment in time when we think of things before and after a particular event. What will we stop doing that we thought fundamental to the way we live, and what will we gravitate back to that was previously just an afterthought?
Will we begin to value connections over possessions, our neighbours over sportspeople, our friends over celebrities and our families over our careers? Will working from home be so successful that urban sprawl, perceived overpopulation and development, give way to sea and tree changes and the return of the ¼ acre block? Will we go back to consuming commodities and energy the way that we always have?
I see broadly two different approaches to how people deal with this forced isolation. There will be those who take the opportunity to be artistic, creative, build, upskill, read and learn, and those who don’t. I believe that this period has allowed us the opportunity to evolve, and those who take the opportunity will be thankful for it.
In the immortal words of Winston Churchill, never let a good crisis go to waste.
What does this mean for your wealth? Well, financial advice is much more than just talking about wealth accumulation.