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Motivational resources

Philippines has been known to be the home of resilient people. Disaster upon disaster, Filipinos have undeniably become stronger and optimistic as seen in the context of post-disaster recovery and survival. In simple words, this narrative of the so-called Filipino resiliency is derived from Filipinos still being able to paint smile on their faces despite the mishap they encounter as well as being able to overcome the suffering and trauma.

Even so, the strike of the pandemic appears to have greatly affected the Filipinos as the tremors it carries along covers a lot of aspects in the society. The pandemic, being a pain in the neck that hinders people from doing what they usually do throughout the day, signifies huge impacts in their lives. Such societal changes in the country have definitely brought worries to Filipinos, leaving yet another period where their resiliency is put to the test. However, more than ever, this significant shift has given rise to Filipino spirit being fueled not just by pure optimism but also by capitalizing the advancement of technology.

Looking at the education system alone, students are confined within the four corners of their household or any Zoom meeting for that matter. Being deprived of having access to classroom-learning environment, modular and digital learning were implemented to still uphold the value of education despite the situation. Even though it has been a rough ride to the learners and educators, a progress can still be seen since the classes are still ongoing and have not put to a halt due to big concerns.

In terms of physical socialization, meeting people in person has become inconvenient ever since community quarantine was imposed to contain the spread of the virus. Once a busy country where a lot of things happen – be it in the street or in a company building – has turned into a virtual one where people interact with one another. People resorted to using the internet and technological devices as the main media for communication. As a matter of fact, a report from The Asian Post revealed that the internet and social media usage of Filipinos especially video chatting apps such as Messenger and Zoom have seen rises from 47% to 67% compared to pre-lockdown levels. This just proves that harnessing digital technologies has been a way for Filipinos to overcome the impact brought by the pandemic.

In relation, it is undeniable that a lot of people lost their jobs that support their family and financial expenses. However, being Filipinos with fighting spirit, many have found ways to make an income which includes selling online and working remotely. This is evident with the proliferation of online selling apps and posts in the internet. Some even go live on Facebook to promote their products as well as to engage with people. Aside from this, a study from Lenovo Global revealed that 26% of Filipinos are already working at the comfort of their homes and 87% of employees are ready to keep pace with the ‘work from home’ trend.

With these being said, it is rational to point out that Filipinos have learned to take advantage of the modernity in confronting the said crisis. Stoking resiliency with pure optimism has long been due that they were able to find tangible solutions for the pandemic’s repercussions.  This is of great beneficial because as world continues to grow and advance, so does the advent of forthcoming problems. Hence, learning to embark to more accessible digital vessel while still carrying optimism would prevent Filipinos from being left behind on the old boat.

Indeed, resiliency being strengthened by adapting to changes can be seen in Filipinos with the current situation. However, beyond that is the development of their role as citizens in the country. The pandemic may has brought distress and social changes to the table but such shift has become a driving force that conduces to solidarity among Filipinos. This can be seen with volunteers catering the needs of frontliners. They are providing foods and rides for protective and health workers who are risking their life every day. Other than that, there are private groups that are providing ‘ayuda’ to fend for the families affected. They give goods and some cash that can help families get through day by day.

Helping out aside, the changes brought by the pandemic have allowed Filipinos to understand the gravity of the situation. These have caused them to have a sense of responsibility to follow the safety protocols implemented by the government and World Health Organization (WHO). In fact, the international survey conducted by UK think tank YouGov in partnership with the Institute of Global Health Innovation revealed that Filipinos ranked second in obedience to the policies among 29 countries as 91% of Filipinos wear masks outside their homes. This is mirrored by the finding of a survey conducted by Social Weather Stations (SWS) in July, stating that a big majority of Filipinos wear masks when they go out even after the lockdowns were lifted.

It is apparent that the changes being experienced in this time of pandemic is revolutionary. Filipino resiliency gets stronger and stronger as they are constantly bombarded with numerous hurdles. However, it is important to note that the changes have made Filipinos romanticize it by not merely having an optimistic outlook on the situations; rather, they are also empowering it by looking ways to resolve and conquer the existing problems. More than that, it has urged Filipinos to become better citizens in the country in such a way that they have developed compassion towards people as well as sense of responsibility to comply with the policies for common good.

Unprecedented changes do not necessarily bring despair to the humanity for it can also serve as an avenue for people to foster. Progress is rooted from changes. Hence, embrace the changes and turn it into motivational resources.


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