If you’re stuck at home, under or unemployed, now is the time to start thinking about time management. Something positive can come out of this rough time, if you invest in yourself and use your time wisely. The coronavirus social distancing orders are in effect all over the US, leading to millions of people losing their jobs, unsure of if they will ever return to work. Some jobs have been permanently lost, which means there will be a transition to other various skills for the future job market. This is a new reality everyone must accept. Shifts in job skills happen, that’s why it’s important to challenge yourself and learn a new skill.
A Brave New World
We live in a modern world. Nearly everything you do involves a computer and some kind of advance skills. This fact is only growing more important as technology advances and society moves towards automation. Technological advances can help us live a higher quality life, it’s not a bad thing. However, older jobs that are no longer efficient or feasible will be going away.
Because of the 2020 coronavirus pandemic, a shift in economic skills may have been accelerated. Instead of gradually changing markets, the disease outbreak rapidly shut things down, to the point of immediate job losses and no transition plan for workers.
Scientists have tried to tell government leaders this would happen, for decades. We are now forced to deal with making sure people can get immediate healthcare, housing, and basic income. Meanwhile, we have to rapidly figure out how to almost immediately implement a new workforce. This modern workforce will involve heavy telecommute, network and computing environments. That also means workers need some basic technology skills to survive the new marketplace needs.
New job markets will come out of this, including transportation, education, technology, science, and other industry. But the good paying jobs will almost always involve more advanced skills than “no skill” positions, which often pay closer to minimum wage.
Until we get a universal basic income, it’s in your best interest to gain as many advanced skills as possible so you can increase your income and job security. Besides, the more skills you have, the better you will be at making decisions and solving problems in your own life.
The Quarantine Period
Most public health experts agree that the social distancing and shutdowns will last at least 3 months. This time period began in late February to early March 2020. Some disruptions will last longer than this because of poor US infrastructure, policy, and a bad economy. You can expect it to take longer than this to get back to “normal”, which may not be exactly like things were before the pandemic.
One thing is for sure, this is enough time to learn a valuable new skill. You should use this time to learn a new skill that could help land you a better job.
Learn Something New
Everyone has to start somewhere. Don’t expect to learn these overnight! But some people are quick at learning new skills. It’s also ok to study more than one subject at a time.
Here are just a few ideas:
- Geographic information systems
- Artificial intelligence
- PHP programming
- Cloud computing
- Mobile application development
- Graphic design
- Web frameworks
Don’t forget, employers look at “emotional skills” as well. These make a well-rounded candidate, you’ll stand out. Emotional skills include:
- Communication ability
You always have options, even when it doesn’t seem like it. The coronavirus pandemic shutdown is definitely a challenge for everyone, but something good can come out of it. You have the power to do something meaningful with your free time. You can learn any of the above skills for free online. There are also formal (college) education resources where you can take free and low cost courses online to get official credit. Learn as many skills as you can, specifically science and tech skills to help make better decisions in life, increase your income potential and future job security. Good luck!