Two-thirds of Americans say quarantine has made them a better person
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The COVID-19 pandemic has had a devastating effect on America's health and economy. There's no way to take the loss of over 180,000 people and 20 million jobs and spin it into a positive.

However, if there are any lessons we can take from past tragedies, it's the importance of finding some rays of hope to illuminate our way through the darkness.

Earlier in the spring, there was a significant drop in pollution, giving us a glimpse into what a cleaner world might look like. For many, the lockdown was an opportunity to spend more time with their immediate families and pay more attention to what really matters.


A lot of people saved money during quarantine by avoiding huge bar tabs and expensive vacations.

Let's face it, the quarantine was also a great excuse to avoid seeing the family members and acquaintances we normally dread.

All in all, a new poll finds that two-thirds of Americans say quarantine actually made them a better person.

The poll of 2,000 Americans over age 21 looked at the positive changes we've made and lessons learned from the past few months. It found that lockdown helped a majority of people re-prioritize their lives for the better.

The poll was conducted by Coravin and OnePoll.

Some respondents say that the quarantine gave them the time and flexibility to engage in new hobbies. Thirty-five percent of respondents say they hope to continue these hobbies after quarantine is over.,

The change in professional behaviors over the past few months inspired 27% of Americans to pursue a better work-life balance coming out of quarantine.

Being apart from those we are close to also gave people a new appreciation for their friends and families. Going forward, 46% want to spend more quality time with loved ones, and 38% plan to create more meaningful relationships.

"Quarantine has given us unprecedented time to explore and try new things both personally and with our loved ones," Coravin CEO Chris Ladd said. "It's forced us to be creative in how we remain connected when we are physically distant. And it's created an environment where virtual events like wine tastings have flourished, introducing a broader audience to experiences they might not have had in person. We expect these new approaches to last well after 'normal' returns."

Being stuck in lockdown for months on end made many of us long for life's simple pleasures that we previously took for granted.

Here's a list of the top things people no longer take for granted according to the survey.

Spending quality time in person with family or friends 52.28%

Hugs 41.23%

Traveling to new destinations 32.53%

A relaxing walk in the park 31.99%

Shopping in a store 31.73%

A date night at a restaurant 31.39%

Extended family gatherings 30.86%

Attending events in person 28.92%

Stopping for a cup of coffee on my way to work 25.90%

Meeting new people 25.70%

Weekly coffee dates with friends 24.36

Post-work happy hour 23.69%

Chatting with co-workers during lunch 23.56%

Having a quiet weekend at home be out of the ordinary 22.96%

An afternoon at the beach 22.36%

Sending my children off to school in the morning 21.49%

Attending sporting events 21.22%

Wandering through a bookstore 20.68%

Watching my kids' sporting events 18.14%

Hitting the gym 17.54%

Dropping my kids off at playdates 16.06%

Unfortunately, it appears as though the United States will be on lockdown for the foreseeable future. But that gives us the opportunity to work on self-improvement and foster an attitude of gratitude and appreciation.

A great way to get started on self-improvement during lockdown is to make a list of the hobbies we'd like to get into or skills we'd like to learn. A list can also be helpful to remember the things that we've missed during lockdown so we can enjoy life when it lifts.

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After years of service as a military nurse in the naval Marine Corps, Los Angeles, California-resident Rhonda Jackson became one of the 37,000 retired veterans in the U.S. who are currently experiencing homelessness — roughly eight percent of the entire homeless population.

"I was living in a one-bedroom apartment with no heat for two years," Jackson said. "The Department of Veterans Affairs was doing everything they could to help but I was not in a good situation."

One day in 2019, Jackson felt a sudden sense of hope for a better living arrangement when she caught wind of the ongoing construction of Veteran's Village in Carson, California — a 51-unit affordable housing development with one, two and three-bedroom apartments and supportive services to residents through a partnership with U.S.VETS.

Her feelings of hope quickly blossomed into a vision for her future when she learned that Veteran's Village was taking applications for residents to move in later that year after construction was complete.

"I was entered into a lottery and I just said to myself, 'Okay, this is going to work out,'" Jackson said. "The next thing I knew, I had won the lottery — in more ways than one."

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The Hill/Twitter

It was a mere three weeks ago that President Biden announced that the U.S. would have enough vaccine supply to cover every adult American by the end of July. At the time, that was good news.

Today, he's bumped up that date by two full months.

That's great news.

In his announcement to the nation, Biden outlined the updated process for getting the country immunized against COVID-19.


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We're redefining what normal means in these uncertain times, and although this is different for all of us, love continues to transform us for the better.

Love is what united Marie-Claire and David Archbold, who met while taking a photography class. "We went into the darkroom to see what developed," they joke—and after a decade of marriage, they know firsthand the deep commitment and connection romantic love requires.

All photos courtesy of Marie-Claire and David Archbold

However, their relationship became even sweeter when they adopted James: a little boy with a huge heart.

In the United States alone, there are roughly 122,000 children awaiting adoption according to the latest report from the U.S Department of Health and Human Services. While the goal is always for a child to be parented by and stay with their biological family, that is not always a possibility. This is where adoption offers hope—not only does it create new families, it gives birth parents an avenue through which to see their child flourish when they are not able to parent. For the right families, it's a beautiful thing.

The Archbolds knew early on that adoption was an option for them. David has three daughters from a previous marriage, but knowing their family was not yet complete, the couple embarked on a two-year journey to find their match. When the adoption agency called and told them about James, they were elated. From the moment they met him, the Archbolds knew he was meant to be part of their family. David locked eyes with the brown-eyed baby and they stared at each other in quiet wonder for such a long time that the whole room fell silent. "He still looks at me like that," said David.

The connection was mutual and instantaneous—love at first sight. The Archbolds knew that James was meant to be a part of their family. However, they faced significant challenges requiring an even deeper level of commitment due to James' medical condition.

James was born with congenital hyperinsulinism, a rare condition that causes his body to overproduce insulin, and within 2 months of his birth, he had to have surgery to remove 90% of his pancreas. There was a steep learning curve for the Archbolds, but they were already in love, and knew they were committed to the ongoing care that'd be required of bringing James into their lives. After lots of research and encouragement from James' medical team, they finally brought their son home.

Today, three-year-old James is thriving, filled with infectious joy that bubbles over and touches every person who comes in contact with him. "Part of love is when people recognize that they need to be with each other," said his adoptive grandfather. And because the Archbolds opted for an open adoption, there are even more people to love and support James as he grows.

This sweet story is brought to you by Sumo Citrus®. This oversized mandarin is celebrated for its incredible taste and distinct looks. Sumo Citrus is super-sweet, enormous, easy-to-peel, seedless, and juicy without the mess. Fans of the fruit are obsessive, stocking up from January to April when Sumo Citrus is in stores. To learn more, visit sumocitrus.com and @sumocitrus.

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It's amazing to consider just how quickly the world has changed over the past 11 months. If you were to have told someone in February 2020 that the entire country would be on some form of lockdown, nearly everyone would be wearing a mask, and half a million people were going to die due to a virus, no one would have believed you.

Yet, here we are.

PPE masks were the last thing on Leah Holland of Georgetown, Kentucky's mind on March 4, 2020, when she got a tattoo inspired by the words of a close friend.

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via ABC News

Julia Tinetti, 31, and Cassandra Madison, 32, first met in 2013 while working at The Russian Lady, a bar in New Haven, Connecticut, and the two immediately hit it off.

"We started hanging out together. We went out for drinks, dinner," Julia told "Good Morning America." "I thought she was cool. We hit it off right away," added Cassandra

The two also shared a strong physical resemblance and matching tattoos of the flag of the Dominican Republic. They had a bond that was so unique, even their coworkers thought there must be something more happening.

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