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  • Carol Wong

Redesigning my personal habits


Since 17 March, I have been staying at home throughout the MCO period (Malaysia's version of lockdown acronyms). I did not step outside my condo until 15 May for a lunch date with my son at One Mont Kiara. On that first day outside, I was struggling to ensure that my hands were not contaminating my items stored in my handbag while handling payment at the cashier with eWallet and credit card. I was so stressed after lunch and shopping at the mall, and hence I decided not to go out after that experience.


The second trip furthest from home was to my client's office in the city center on 11 June post-CMCO. It was an adventure to me as I was pivoting my habits throughout the journey to the client's office. I was not wearing a face mask in my car, and I was surprised to discover that there was a security guard at the parking entrance requiring me to wind down my car window to take my body temperature. I struggled to put on my face mask quickly.


When I entered the office building lift, I used a pen to press the lift button. I thought that I was very prepared to keep myself safe from staining my finger. I was startled to find that I could not press the lift button with the pen because the button was not flat. I ended up using my figure to press the button.


When I stepped out from the lift, I found myself having to make a detour using a path that I have not traveled before to get to the client's office itself. On arrival at the client's office meeting room, I tried to figure out where I should sit and where I should put my stuff (without me having to sanitize my stuff when I got home).


I wore my face mask throughout the meeting in the office, but I forgot about it when chatting with the client throughout the lunch meeting. I continued to have a meeting with the client without wearing the mask after lunch. When I got home, I reflected on the situations for change in my next outing.


In conclusion, I felt that I need to redesign my habits that will make me feel peace of mind at all times. Besides regular hand washing and social distancing, I need to create a personal SOP (a commonly used term by our Government in the approval of business opening) that can assure a safe environment for myself when I am outdoor. I am pivoting this SOP on the fly now.


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