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As we delve ever deeper into the Coronavirus challenge, the call for character increases. This may not be as obvious a statement as ‘following the science’ and other twee clichés designed to assuage the panic of the populace, but it is nevertheless true.

It is true because some of us, those with ‘underlying health concerns’ are obliged to listen to the daily news reports that obsess with telling us that our personal Armageddon is closing in on us either geographically (I’m 6 miles away from the nearest) or numerically (“here’s today’s news on deaths and new cases”). The unconscious message is ‘You’ll be next!” Oh, great.

Character is required because we are being challenged, and because we are being challenged to deal with unknowns which for the majority lie firmly within their Circle of Concern, and equally firmly outside, or at least on the very outer edge of their Circle of Influence. The answer to this challenge lies within the competence of the NHS and the Doctors and Nurses who have to (a) deal with it and (b) be exposed to it so that the rest of us aren’t. For them, most of all, character shines out because they could all, justifiably, think selfishly and stay at home. We are very reliant upon the competence and character of the health workers. We need them to focus in their Circle of Influence so that our Circle of Concern can shrink a little.

Unfortunately, the same can’t be said of the politicians, who equally possess COVID-19 in their Circle of Concern..

At a time where the country needs to pull together, to fight off this challenge and defeat it, all I see on the news is point-scoring. The Opposition cannot wait, when asked about the virus, to start banging on about cuts in services and austerity measures (which they caused) and blaming the government for everything.

That’s really helpful. Thanks.

Of course, what makes it worse in 21st Century thinking is the immediacy and the accessibility of the media. I don’t recall wide-spread and overt criticism of the government at the outset of WW2: there seemed to be, if reports are to be believed, a sense of common purpose and community about that particular threat.

But here we are, needing character and what do we have?

Whining opposition politicians, and people stockpiling toilet paper and taking all the sanitizer off the store shelves while happily mingling in crowds. Isn’t that a little odd?

I’ll admit that as a result of this ‘countdown’ news reportage I am disheartened. There seems to be no positivity available to us. It’s all doom and gloom, where the updates are- ‘10% have had it’ rather than ‘90% will have a runny nose’. It is demoralising.

It’s the 2020 version of ‘Let’s learn German.’

So character is called for. Some stoicism, some resignation, but above all the taking of the opportunity to become better people by demonstrating patience, consideration, common sense and all those other traits which we know serve us better than selfishness, panic and disrespect.

And in a worst case scenario, demonstrating love for those we love. Time is always running out, but occasionally something happens to make us realise that with just a little more clarity.

Love you, folks. Take care.

And if you MUST self-isolate, get a copy of The 7 Habits and the Workbook, and use the time to Get Better in more ways than one!