Covid-19 pandemic makes everyone adapt to new behaviors and habits ranging from prioritizing activities at home, keeping a distance, avoiding leaving the house unless important, washing hands and wearing masks when leaving the house. Drastic behavior changes like this can lead to boredom, fear and even high levels of stress. This is natural, because reading, seeing and hearing shape us, both personally and psychologically.
The aforementioned effects are normal because the bombardment of news about the severity of covid-19 affect people both personally and psychologically.
Like people learning to be enterpreneurs are afraid of going bankrupt, peoplestudying astronomy are afraid of falling stars, people studying geology are afraid of earthquakes, liquefaction in Palu, etc, we have the similiar fear about covid-19. Our fear of Covid-19 is very reasonable due to our massive consumption of daily media content that have a real impact on our daily lives.
Responding to covid-19 effect, in addition to complying with existing health protocols in preventing transmission of the Covid-19 virus, there are also three alternative formulas to strengthen our immunity and build confidence that this pandemic will end soon. First, the same understanding aboute covid-19. Second, establishing good communication management between government, community, family, relatives and neighbors. Finally, shifting friendship and social creativity into economic systems or relaxation in the digital world to minimize crowds and leave the house for things that are not important.
The first formula, the government and citizens must agree on the interpretation of the Covid-19 virus. It must be seen not as a threat to humanity, but as a test so that people can live better by implementing new normal strategy issued by the government. Same as Piranha (a type of fish). Piranha is known as extreme preadator, but the discovery of medical use of piranha flesh as a rare drug makes people working in medicine and general public see it as a medicine rather than dangerous fish. Moreover, if it has been manufactured by pharmaceutical company. Same thing applied for herbal medicines from plants and also cannabis plants that can be interpreted or seen as illegal plants and drugs that make people sometimes feel instantly paranoid.
So the first formula is the same understanding in perceiving Covid-19 virus since people behave according to their understanding of something. Our makhnuniyah (togetherness, unity) as a nation is currently being tested, especially in terms of compliance and obedience to similar understanding of the virus; that it is a test not a threat. The same compliance and obedience must be perfomed in term of health protocol. It is in line with the statement of the Indonesian Ambassador to Saudi Arabia, Agus Maftuh Abegebriel.
Establishing good communication management
The second formula is to build good communication management. This is very important because from communication alone can bring up public trust or distrust. So do not say “don’t panic” when we actually feel the same. Sometimes it is better to speak up because we know and have the real data and sometimes we are better off quiet because we don’t know anything.
There is a media that only chases ratings and viewers but denies the truth by uploading a video of children eating tadpoles in 2018 then associated it with the emergence of Covid-19. It shows the need of filters and good communication channels especially in handling the Covid-19 case. The media should unite in one door system to minimize hoaxes and manipulative information that benefit certain individuals and groups. Both citizen and government must learn to establish good communication. The government willingness to learn is evident, proven by its better stance than some other countries, although there were still some concerns and note.
After the success of disaster mitigation and its preventive efforts by evacuating, quarantining and observing Indonesian students who lived in China for 14 days in Natuna Island, it turned out that the Indonesian government was stuttered after the first positive Covid-19 case was found in Jakarta. Starting from the announcement of the identity of the patient of Covid-19 to the public (patient were uninformed), and resulting in panic buying in Depok. Public officials also showed lack of empathy and respect and stated that “Indonesia is immune to the Covid-19 virus”,“Covid-19 cannot stand the hot weather in Indonesia” and “ This is an opportunity to boost tourism.” Finally they blame the citizen for disobeying the rule
Finally, shifting friendship and social creativity into economic profit or relaxation in the digital world to minimize crowds and leave the house for things that are not important. This third formula can not be fully implemented if the two previous formulas are not well understood. Missunderstanding and poor communication will reduce or even frustrate the creative content that we make on social media. Creativity in creating things, relationships, or new products requires optimism, careful interpretation, good skills and communication.
The current phenomenon is that a lot of new YouTubers appear and upload positive content in the middle of a pandemic. Not only lecturers, students, researchers, artists and even entrepreneurs have come to enliven YouTube content. I believe that the motivation is not only the benefits of Adsense by monetizing websites or content, but also the boredom at home that has triggered them to make productive and useful works. It also as an alternative to spend times, sharpen skills and hobbies that have been delayed.
Cheria Craft, one of the youtube channels owned by Anggi Jatmiko and his wife that uploads simple and interesting content such as how to make a Lebaran envelope, birthday present, gift ribbon and many others is quite inspiring. It is a simple example of productive and creative activities in the middle of a pandemic .
Cheria Craft is part of the examples of shifting social relations and creativity into economic profit or relaxation in the digital world. Other activities such as self healing with meditation or worship, playing games such as football, educative tiktok, Moto GP virtual race, or writing, discussions, seminars, making songs or useful products and many others.
So digitalization of creativity in the midst of this pandemic must also be supported by the government with good facilities, especially for those who are quarantined by providing Wifi, TV, parks and productive places of activity.
Those are three formulas to respond Covid-19 virus that can be a reference when doing activities at home. What can be done is to continue to fight by obeying health protocols and new normal rules as well as applying the three formulas against the Covid-19 virus, This endeavors should always be accompanied by our prayers to God, hoping that this virus will soon end.