18 weeks. 125 day. 2994 hours. No matter the unit, it’s been a long time since Britain was put on Lockdown and the whole country changed before our eyes, and my life in particular changed in many unexpected ways.
This year has been unpredictable for all of us, but it’s seemed to divide the population into those who have thrived and those who have suffered even though many people have done both. Whilst some of us have finally gotten around to that pet project we’ve wanted to do, strenuously exercised from our own living rooms or excitedly taken part in at-home lockdown trends. Others have struggled to work, socialise or motivate themselves for almost anything. I’ve been through both, and there are 5 big changes I have realised in lockdown that I will carry through after.
Here are my top 5 tips to keep your life on track post-lockdown.
I had thousands upon thousands of emails before lockdown. Mailing lists of places I don’t visit, important changes that should be filed away, juicy discounts I should have taken advantage of. Lockdown has given me a bit of time to not only sort through this intimidating list and get rid of that annoying red dot above my email app but it has allowed me to plan forward with important folders and get useful information straight away.
Just. Do. It.
It doesn’t matter if it’s perfect, it just matters that it’s real. When lockdown first happened I was struggling to write as I was so dependant on ‘experience‘ posts and what is an experience post without an experience? I beat myself up about not writing but didn’t want to put out anything I didn’t think was perfect. I had a jar filled to the brim with ideas for posts going nowhere. I had products and clothing mounting that I wanted to review but didn’t think I was good enough to.
If something isn’t perfect, it’s ok. You learn from doing, and I am finally doing what I want and not hiding it away.
I’ve been combing through years worth of Netflix on my list, i’ve been playing games that have been sat on my shelf for years, sure when lockdown ends I will have less time to do this, but I’ve enjoyed not putting so much on the backburner, after all, life is for living and things are for using.
Take care of things that take care of you
If I don’t like something I will quickly dismiss it, not look after it to the point it breaks and i’m forced to get a new one, problem solved, right? Wrong!
I am fortunate enough to have a car, and through no fault of my own it’s tainted, tainted with bad memories, physical dents, rage worthy qualities. I hated it, I wanted to trade it in so I didn’t clean it, I didn’t care if it broke down and frankly, until recently I wasn’t going to need it after September anyway. Now I have accepted a full time position at my new job I will be averaging a 60 mile motorway round trip to work, and that’s when I finally started listening to people. Frankly there’s not a whole lot wrong with my car. Sure the colour isn’t perfect, and it has wear and tear, but the majority of what I see wrong with it is personal, so I have booked it in for a service, am getting the broken wheel replaced (
stupid DANGEROUS of me to drive on it anyway) I’ll be replacing the hubcaps, I’ve FINALLY (after 8 years) learnt how to work the radio so that won’t bug me every time it falls out of sync and I spend 10 minutes trying to find Radio One. I don’t know a nuclear cleaner who can blitz the inside but i’ll try my best. My car has seen me almost to 100,000 miles now, and I should be thankful for that. If the time comes when I want to upgrade then I will, but it looks after me daily and I should pay that back, plus it’ll get me a bit more money when I do decide to trade it in and i’ll have enjoyable journeys.
Make time for friends and family (zoom calls don’t have to stop)
One of the best things to come out of lockdown is weekly skype parties with friends and family across the nation. It’s allowed people to really make time for their close ones. I’m lucky enough to have a core group of friends who have been with me since the beginning, we all live across the country but text regularly and are always there for each other. We will meet up when we can but usually it’s never the whole group at once and when it is it’s usually Christmas holidays.
Since lockdown we’ve been having regular skype chats alongside our daily texting, we’ve played games together, drank together, been there for each other throughout this all, and i’m so lucky to have them. I will be seeing them all again in 2 weeks when I visit home and I don’t see us stopping this tradition when life goes back to normal, it may be less frequently but it’s a staple now.
Lockdown happens and my bank balance goes up. Theres nothing to do, nowhere to go. I am finally able to sort through old items I don’t want and sell them. Lately I’ve bought a whole new wardrobe and some treats i’ve wanted for ages, and I don’t think you should deprive yourselves of these. But lockdown has made me analyze where I was needlessly spending money, and frankly, would I rather skip a meal out once or twice a week and go for a cute weekend getaway? I sure would! I’ve recently gotten Monzo and created a few pots for things I want to do, i’ve tried to allocate money to things in life I need and then look at excess, I will of course be going back out and doing things again when they reopen, after all I have to finish my LIST right? But I’ll definitely be skipping the weekly trips to primark for things i’ll wear once and never again, opting for homecooked instead of restaurants and putting more into different savings so I can go out on more trips and holidays.
So there we have it. My top 5 tips for ease of life post-lockdown. You may say these are sensible things any adult should already be doing, but I’ve never quite been the sensible one, and if it’s taken me Lockdown to realise these then maybe every cloud does have a silver lining?
What have you learnt during lockdown? Will any habits you’ve made stick once the world is free to roam again? Let me know in the comments!