For years scientists have spent their entire careers studying and trying to understand how viruses work. They are the ultimate nanomachines who build themselves from smaller components.
As Helena Maier, an expert in coronavirus replication at the Pirbright Institute says, “Viruses are incredibly simple yet incredibly complicated. They can take over entire biological systems to do what they need to do.” So yes viruses are very intelligent, they do things that the scientists don’t expect them to do. They change in order to survive.
So what does this tell us? Well it tells us that they thrive on change, they are adaptable, and they learn to evolve.
These are 3 really important qualities for a virus so it can wreak the havoc that it does on the human population, but I also think that they are important lessons for us mere mortals.
How often have we given up on a dream because we are unwilling to take a different road to get there. Most of us aren’t a fan of change but it can give us new beginnings that can be incredible. If change happens in your life are you adaptable to it? Can you be flexible and versatile? Can you evolve with and through this change in your life?
A friend of mine Warren MacDonald who lost both his legs in an accident while camping and hiking on Queensland’s Hinchinbrook Island, taught me that it’s not about ‘what you see, but how you see it’. Those viruses see a problem and evolve so they can take control of a cell, even if that cell has put up a barrier, the virus will find a way to change. Hence the various forms of a viruses we end up seeing.
In my life when I was first diagnosed with MS I swore I would never use a wheelchair or walking aid because that would be giving in to MS. But a few years later I called upon Warren’s idea and realised that I needed to see how those aids would help me to have the freedom to get out of the house, to socialise and to continue to live my life, instead of believing it was giving in to MS.
What an amazing world this would be if we could all be like those viruses and reassess how we see things. We all experience changes to our life plan, but we have to remember that the actual changes aren’t important, it’s the way we deal with them by becoming adaptable and evolving.
So the next time something in life is a barrier or a problem, look at how you can change the way you are going about it and learn to be like a virus – evolve with the change and be adaptable to doing whatever it is in a different way.
“It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent. It is the one that is most adaptable to change.” Charles Darwin