Nearly half of the adults around the world say it’s been easier than they thought to adapt to changes they’ve had to make during the coronavirus pandemic, according to a new report.
Forty-seven percent have said it has been “easier” than they imagined to adjust and have turned to a variety of coping mechanisms in order to do so. Nearly 70% of adults say they were “overwhelmed” by the various changes taking place during the pandemic, according to Ford’s Looking Further with Ford Trends report.
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“It was surprising to see how resilient people are, but I think it just comes down to human nature,” Ford Chief Futurist Sheryl Connelly told FOX Business. “People adapted because there was community doing this with them.”
Not only did the data underscore the resilience within people around the world, but it also indicated that some changes are likely to last even when the pandemic ends.
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As anxiety rises globally due to “fears of contracting COVID-19 and concerns about the pandemic’s impact on communities, employment, education,” about four out of five adults admitted they should take better care of their emotional well-being, according to the report.
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People around the world are taking this time to escape the confines of their homes and are using their vehicles to do it. More than one in four adults worldwide have been using their vehicle to relax, while one in five adults are using their vehicle as a means to get some privacy, according to the data. About 17% of respondents use it as a place to work.
The pandemic has also prompted more adults to focus on companionship and reshape “their sense of family.” The data showed that one in two people reported they feel lonely on a regular basis. To cope with this loneliness, adults are reconsidering where they live, moving closer to family and finding companionship in new ways both online and offline, according to the report.
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The pandemic has also changed how people travel — bike and car sales have soared, according to the report. Cities are even making more room on the streets for cyclists to get around. Smart city planning is paving the way for “fully implemented autonomous driving,” with 67% of adults globally saying they are “hopeful about the future of autonomous vehicles,” according to Ford’s report.
However, once the pandemic is over, 41% of people said their shopping habits will be somewhat different, Connelly said. Most adults (75%) said they appreciate how companies have improved the shopping experience since the pandemic began.
With people around the world turning to plastics and other disposables during the pandemic, sustainability has also become a concern.
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Forty-six percent of Gen-Z-ers worldwide, who are currently between the ages of 8 and 23, say the pandemic has made us more wasteful. About 47% believe the pandemic will have a negative impact on the environment in the long term.
Ford’s data was based on 13,005 online interviews from people 18 years or older across 14 countries and conducted between Oct. 27 and Nov. 12, 2020, with The Harris Poll.