Having spent 16 weeks in lockdown and having gone a bit loopy in the process, it has given me time to reflect on my life and what I find important. I do not know what our world will look like post-pandemic, but I believe life will be different when we emerge out into public again. Below are some of the life lessons that I have learnt from this pandemic, which I intend to live by once life is back to normal.
Sometimes it’s great not having to go out
Now we all have a great excuse not to go to events and gatherings with friends – “Sorry I don’t feel comfortable being in an enclosed space with that many other people because, you know, Corona”. But once this is all over we should maintain the right and the confidence to not attend events just because we feel socially obliged or pressured to. Many a times I have attended a night out that I did not want to go on and have ended up overcompensating by drinking too much or just having a totally crap evening. Enough of this British politeness, if you don’t want to go, then don’t go.
You do not need bars and clubs to party
Ever since we have been able to meet up with people from other households I have reverted back to my 16-year-old self and have been drinking in local parks. There are a lot of upsides to this. For one, it is cheaper than drinking in a pub, you get some good old-fashioned fresh air, you can play outdoor games like football and Frisbee and top up your tan in the process. The only cons are that due to the lack of toilets you have to go for a “wild wee” while your mate keeps watch. But I think we should not forget the carefree days of drinking in a park like you are 16 again.
You do not need to go to the gym to exercise
When I arrived home from my travels the gym was already closed. I have no weights or equipment at home, so instead I bought myself a cheap pair of trainers and ventured outside to do something unspeakable, which I previously detested – jogging. And you know what? It wasn’t too bad. I may even venture as far to say that I have caught the ‘running bug’. Plus, when you start jogging, you feel like you are part of an exclusive club that you were never privvy to before. All of a sudden I feel like I am in league with other runners and they give me “The nod” as they run past, as if to say: “You go girl” and all of a sudden I feel like Usain Bolt. Even when the gyms do reopen, I would still work one run into my week to give my workout routine a flavour of variety.
We do not need as much “stuff”
This has to be the biggest sabbatical from buying stuff I don’t really need in my entire adult life. And you know what? I haven’t felt like I was missing out. I would rather save my money and spend it on experiences which enrich my life and give me a good time, rather than spend it on inanimate objects that I do not need. Besides, stuff = clutter and you know what Marie Kondo says about clutter…
Life is too short to not look fabulous
I am tired of living in tracksuit bottoms and not having anything to dress up for. All my fabulous clothes hanging unworn in my wardrobe is a tragedy. Once we are set free I have a lot of catching up to do. Therefore, I am never going to be worried about being overdressed again. I have so many clothes that are hiding in the depths of my wardrobe, too scared to come out in case they show me up as being too dressy at a party, a pub or a coffee date. Fashion is supposed to make you feel good and express your unique personality. Clothes are meant to be worn, not hidden away. So GO ON! Crack those glad rags out! Besides, life is short and we could drop dead at any moment. Do you really want to die in your third-best pair of jeans and an “okay” t-shirt? Think about it.
You don’t need to go into the office to work
This is something that I hope companies will take onboard. They need to trust their employees to work from home. Less people commuting to work will mean a reduction in pollution, which is only a good thing. What’s more, I’m sure people will not miss sitting in traffic for two hours per day or stuffing themselves onto the sweaty and overcrowded underground, which surely will be a source of anxiety for foreseeable future during the pandemic. Plus, when you work from home you have everything you need within easy reach: snacks, coffee, lunch and less of the overbearing colleagues, office drama, people chewing loudly and creepy colleagues. I also hope that companies will not be sending employees to the other side of the world to attend meetings, as we have all seen the light and realised the power of Zoom and Google Meet.
Is there an important life lesson that you have learnt during the pandemic? Let me know in the comments below if I missed anything out!