What if you’re young and the pandemic has ruined all your plans?

The coronavirus pandemic has changed everyone’s life, to a greater or lesser extent. Although they aren’t the most gravely affected by the virus, young people have been particularly negatively affected when it comes to their hopes and expectations for the future.

Apr 17, 2021

Shutterstock | DavideAngelini


By Dolors Massot

The coronavirus pandemic has changed everyone’s life, to a greater or lesser extent. Although they aren’t the most gravely affected by the virus, young people have been particularly negatively affected when it comes to their hopes and expectations for the future.

It’s harder than ever to get a job; unemployment data in practically every country confirms that access to the labor market for young people has declined alarmingly.

A young adult may now think that his or her dreams have collapsed: working to pay for school, studying at university, or going to live in another city in their own country or abroad are often no longer attainable goals. The world seems frozen.

What can you do if you’re a young adult and seem to have no future prospects? How can you turn the situation around?

To begin with, let’s say that “the future” is one thing and “the near future” is another. From historical data, pandemics—since vaccines have been known—have a range of around 5 years from the time they originate and spread until we learn to manage them with the applicable vaccine. In our case, science has already provided vaccines in record time, so now it’s a matter of ensuring that these means are put in place to protect the health of the population in every area of the planet.

This need not be lost time
In the meantime, this period doesn’t have to be lost time for young adults. In the history of mankind, many geniuses have turned these situations of external “slowdown” into moments of inner growth that would later bear fruit.

Ideas for a new perspective
Don’t let confinement make you think you’ve run out of opportunities in life. If the dreams you had can’t be fulfilled (at least for now), make the most of the situation at hand. Here are some ideas to make your time fruitful:

Sign up as a volunteer – Even during the pandemic, there are ways to serve others. Giving to others is the best way to spend your time and will give you the opportunity to do something for society at a time when it’s especially needed. It will help you forget your problems and focus on what’s important.

Take the opportunity to study – Beyond the studies that you may be doing for the academic year, take a look at online courses on some area of specialisation, your hobby or an area of interest that you haven’t explored yet. Learn a language – Even if for the moment you can’t travel or further your studies in another country, take the opportunity to learn languages: Spanish, German, Chinese … Why not? It’ll allow you to learn about other cultures and open up possibilities in your own future career.

Give yourself time to “grow inside” – Our external activities may be reduced but nothing can force us to stop inner activity. It’s a good time to enrich yourself with spiritual reading, prayer, and if possible under current regulations, the sacraments. This will give solidity to your roots as a person and will make you stronger.

Don’t lose sight of the last sentence of the Gospel of St Matthew, because this message of Jesus is valid for every day of our life: “And I will always be with you until the end of the world” (Mt 28:20). Whatever happens, God is with us. He will never abandon us.–– Aleteia

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