The Reason Behind Empty Store Shelves

Uncertainty causes Anxiety; Anxiety causes Fear, Fear causes Nervousness, Nervousness causes Panic, Panic causes helplessness. Have faith in God. He will help and protect you.

–Author unknown

What else can we do other than counting on a supernatural power to relieve us of this grave situation, beyond man’s control? For all practical purposes, the believers can, and do, find solace in Prayer, hoping for an antidote to be created sooner rather than later. The non-believers may continue to sit in awe and wonder when the world will become a usual place like it used to be, just a few months ago. In either case, anxiety is taking its toll on all of us in one way or another.

Some of us find comfort in diverting our attention from personal misery to a concern for other family members, friends, distant relations, and the like. At the same time, let us not forget those among us that live on a day-to-day basis. For them, survival had always been the biggest question, before this virus hitting us, and keeps taking even more painful toll.

What started as a single act of medical neglect in a remote corner of the world has brought the entire world to its knees in a matter of three months. With thousands of innocent people dead, another hundred of thousands afflicted with a virus that has no cure, the scene presents a dire image of an apocalypse on the horizon. Let us also keep in mind all the over-worked medical facilities, exhausted healthcare workers, and the supply chains disrupted due to sudden rush for everything,

We have millions of the elderly population across all continents living in constant threat of getting left out of treatment in case the need arises.

Life has come to a standstill. Counties, cities, even countries are gradually moving to a complete shut-down. They have no choice but to restrict public exposure to this catastrophe of a disease that seems to have no end, not at this time, at least. Practically all channels of relaxation that we regularly counted on are now out of bounds. There’s no possibility of travel for a change. We cannot arrange any picnic or beach party. Cinemas, games, sports events, social clubs, bars, and restaurants are already out of bounds. For fear of spreading the COVID-19 virus further, hardly any venue is open where we could gather.

The situation we find ourselves in, at this time, maybe more appropriately attributed to the first-above-noted element of anxiety that is eating into the moral fabric of the society. Those with little care for the community have been attacking store shelves with all their might. Armed with every available Credit Card to buy whatever they can gather. It seems they have no respect for any moral values and social norms and do not believe in caring for each other.

From toilet paper to laundry detergent, from dry pasta to canned food, from face-masks to anti-bacterial wipes, they are all taken either by hoarders or the unscrupulous get-rich-quick anti-social elements. In turn, they shamelessly display an utter lack of respect for their fellow human beings. The worst fallout of such an irrational behavior poses an imminent risk of their exposure to the virus itself; in the event, no one around them can take preventive measures.

The hidden force behind this panic-buying mentality becomes evident when we take a long, harsh look at its precursors. These are anxiety, fear, nervousness, Panic, and, last but not least, helplessness. And also, let us not forget yet one forceful catalyst we have always known as ‘rumors.’ The fear-psychosis gripping majority of us has caused an insurmountable amount of anxiety. We are scared about the continued availability of all essentials in both near as well as the long term. No wonder human instinct tells us to buy more than we need.

A trip to our friendly outlet shows us near-empty shelves. The brain waves generate the message of oncoming shortages. So, instead of buying one pack of pasta that would last us a week, we pick up three or four. The same holds for everything else.

A case in point is the toilet paper. The first scare surrounding this commodity, so far as I remember, came from Australia. I have absolutely no idea whose brain-child it was, but it caught on like the wildest of any wildfires we have ever seen anywhere. No one is willing to pay attention to the medical advice by all the experts so far that COVID-19 DOES NOT CAUSE DIARRHEA.

We follow the trend in a blind fashion and create a shortage. Our irresponsible actions expose our fellow humans to immense hardships when they are unable to meet their barest minimum needs.

The nervousness resulting from unnecessary anxiety, though not admitted by the wearer, causes uncontrollable Panic. They can only get rid of this situation after amassing a lot of those products already pushed to the brink of shortage. The real villains behind this artificial shortage are the ‘CRIMINAL BLACK MARKETERS.’

An unimaginable level of helplessness arising from the panic-attack, as mentioned above, must find an outlet. We look for every possible resource, whether a far-off store or online, for someone selling the same item at whatever price. Compare this situation to buying a front-row ticket to a Boxing Championship match in Las Vegas. People pay thousands of dollars for the same. Can you indulge in such a luxury when you can hardly afford your child’s school trip or your wife’s root canal treatment?

The need of the hour is to be reasonable in our approach. We must share these feelings with all we can. We need to exercise restraint and desist from panic buying, hoarding, black-marketing, or profiting from this situation where humanity itself comes into question. At this critical juncture, our survival is dependent upon caring and sharing. We shall be open enough to check with our elderly neighbors and offer them anything they urgently need.

STOP believing in, and spreading rumors that cause unknown hardship to the innocent and the gullible. Show respect, buy what and how much you urgently need, let others also exercise their right to live respectfully.

Let us not forget ‘God helps those that help themselves,’ and add ‘by caring and sharing’ to this worldly wisdom, act as if it was the ‘Mantra’ of Meaningful Living!

Thank You!

Bharat Mathur
Bharat Mathur
WHERE goal setting and systematically achieving each one of them has been the ‘Mantra’, where earning trust by delivering value has been an uncompromising principle and where deeply impactful experiences have made an indelible impression to look directly into the eyes of toughest problems and tackling them head-on has been a major cementing glue in the foundation, Bharat Mathur fits the bill, hands down! Creating value for others, out of the challenges his career in the “C” Suite kept throwing at him left, right and center, Bharat now finds solace in being a ‘Guide by Your Side’ rather than a ‘Sage on the Stage with An Eye on What You Buy’! Past 4 decades of Bharat’s life have been no less eventful than that of anyone else in similar circumstances. However, the way he lived from one challenge to another and stayed focused on his goal is clearly visible as much in his Coaching as in his #1 Best Seller Book: “you Are YOU-nique: Realize Your True Worth”! His next book project tackles ‘Internet of things’ (IoT) from the viewpoint of a layman and helps understand this fast-approaching revolution in simple, easy-to-understand language with live examples: “SMART PHONE + I o T = INCOMPARABLE OPPORTUNITIES” Nurturing a number of successful businesses, mentoring a lot more towards astronomical growth and helping them identify and eradicate trouble spots, Bharat has rightfully earned the nickname: ‘Achiever’ Send him Bouquets or Brickbats, Bharat loves it all!
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Darlene Corbett
Darlene Corbett

Thank you for this, Bharat! I appreciate your thoughts in the fabulous article. I could not agree with you more. Like most people, I too am home, but I refuse to succumb to this contagious panic, maybe more than the virus, encroaching on our nation. I go to the grocery store as needed and am amazed to see so much missing. In addition to TP and water, the bread aisles, as well as the poultry and meat sections, are scant.
I continue to be optimistic, practical, and cautious.

By the way, I love the title of your first book. Unique is the subject matter of the U in my Unstuck acronym of which I emphasize in my book.

Have a lovely day! Stay safe, and thank you again!💖

Joel Elveson
Joel Elveson

GREAT ARTICLE, BHARAT! There was no way to adequately prepare ourselves mentally for what is happening. The fear, the panic have all become the new norm. Yes, this virus has killed so many and is G-d forbid likely to kill more. Still, I can’t shake the feeling that the media is financially benefiting from all of this. They are selling fear adding a little more each day. Some of our “leaders” in Washington, D.C. are helping the feelings fear. I just wrote a new article that I dedicated to you as without your urgings and outreach would not have come to be. Here is the link to the article:
Thank you for everything you did for me! I can’t help but wonder what I did to deserve meeting you, your friendship, getting to know you, your words, your wisdom, your intellect, your voice over the telephone, and last but certainly not least your kind, caring, and open heart. You are as I say you are which is you are a very special man. Thank you for being there.

Paula Goodman
Paula Goodman

Great article Bharat! I agree with your words. I am observing so much, as we all are
Re. My social media has never been so demanding. We se new characters and feelings unfold from so many. The arguing, mistrust, abuse…but also support, love, compassion. We all have a new job. To protect humanity. Some are able to shine like no other in these times…we need to take action and give the support with compassion. The demands for answers, the fear, the ignorance, the careless actions.
The leaders now are some we never knew existed. Among the many platforms I am in have shown this.
Sharing and caring has a new meaning now. It is defined by the need to live.
Survival has taken priority and it’s our job to do it right. The birthright of dignity is called to the forefront! Hopefully we can lend a hand in its reinstatement here!
Thank you so much for adding value and I’m sure helping many.
Trusting the process and having faith in God is most helpful.
We pray and do what God has told us too. Believe in him and help others!
The hearts of people need to be caressed with understanding and compassion. Anxiety needs soothing and the trust shown.
Thank you again

Lynn Forrester-Pitocco
Lynn Forrester-Pitocco

Great piece Bharat, and so true. There is something called greed, and it is sinful, so much of what is happening shows how people can be seen as either compassionate, caring, considerate or just plain greedy, not caring. AT some point we are all held accountable. God Bless

Aldo Delli Paoli
Aldo Delli Paoli

Bharat, as always, you know how exactly describe the human aspects of our daily life.
Panic, perceived, badly spread, has generated the irresponsible reactions that you describe. And we are not only talking about the genres of daily necessity, but the problem occurred for things (such as masks) that aren’t still in the pharmacy …. but there is someone who was discovered in the act of selling them to other countries !!
That the crime can take advantage of this situation is not just a possible hypothesis, it is somewere a reality!.
But it is not panic that drives the irresponsibility of those who still circulate without a real need, causing harm to themselves, to their loved ones, to others, and have no respect for the work that all those who are working, at the risk of their life, to save or alleviate that of the sick or weaker.
I hope that all this makes us understand all the things that I have already indicated in my other articles on the subject, one at least of all: we have to learn to produce things that are needed, not only those that make a profit!
Thank you.



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