Lessons Learned

After a major event, such as this, has impacted our lives, we should have learned something from it.

What have we learned?

1 - Take Notes - Crisis Journal. Unfortunately, a crisis is the perfect time to learn. Before all is forgotten after the crisis, write down details of the event shortly after they happen during the crisis. What went well? What didn't go well? What didn't we prepare for; what caught us with our pants down? What did we do well with our preparations? What solutions did we come up with "off the cuff" that we can apply to the next crisis (and there will be another) so it won't be "off the cuff"? Our note taking may also help better cope with the crisis-at-hand and improve our future preparations and handling the next crisis. Here are some suggestion on How to Start Journaling. The Emergency Preparations Checklist may help to categorize/organize the journal for future preparations.

2 - Stay Prepared. Most emergencies happen without notice and are not announced. Prepare BEFORE an event like this is even announced. Review your plans and preparations often so they aren't like unfamiliar questions on the day of the test. We should all be prepared for anything at anytime.

3 - Don't expect, or trust, the government to protect us. They are reactive, not proactive. Assume they can't and prepare to 'protect' yourself. Ultimately, what we do for ourselves is what will protect us most. By the time government gets up to speed, the situation could be well out-of-control, not to mention government overstepping their authority to 'control' the situation and violate our legal rights and liberties. Those who would give up essential liberty, to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety - Benjamin Franklin
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4 - Stay informed but take the media reports with a grain of salt. They tend to make things sound worse than they are. They need to make money on sensationalism to boost audience viewing/listening.

5 - Don't panic with the rest of the crowd. Panic is the response of those who are unprepared. Go about your regular life activities as long as your are not in any danger. Calmly adjust your plans and preparations as the situation changes.

6 - Sanitation should not be the exception. It should be normal and routine. We should not have to learn about Personal Hygiene after a viral outbreak. We must, also, assume that others care less about their personal cleanliness so that we are ready to protect ourselves from their bad habits. As one housekeeper was overheard to say, "people are pigs".

7 - We can do things differently and, maybe, more efficiently.
- We don't have to go to an office to get work accomplished or a meeting room for meetings.
- Our children do not have to go to "school" to be educated and parents can be better than "teachers".
- Many of us realized we can live on less [money] than we thought.