Zoe Weil is a blogger for Psychology Today (PT), and twice a month we share her blog posts here.
Writing this post on March 10, 2020, I have no idea what the future holds for COVID-19 fatalities. Looking back months or years from now, will we determine that we overreacted to a novel coronavirus? Or will we be profoundly grateful for the closure of schools, the cancellation of events, the warnings about travel, and the calls for extra handwashing and social distancing that led to the tapering off of what might otherwise have killed millions of people?
From this relatively early moment in the spread of coronavirus, none of us can know the answer to these questions, but there are solutions we can embrace now that can lead to positive outcomes during this potentially dire disease outbreak.
In my work as a humane educator, I teach others how to become solutionaries, people who are able to identify inhumane, destructive, and unsustainable systems and then develop solutions that are healthy and just for people, animals, and the environment. Conscious of their personal impact, solutionaries are not simply problem-solvers; they also embrace the principle of doing the most good and least harm (MOGO for short) through their personal choices.
What does the MOGO principle look like in relation to COVID-19? This principle asks us to keep everyone’s interests and well-being in mind, not just our own.