What I’ve Learnt in a Year of Lockdown

At this point, it’s been 13 months since the UK’s first national lockdown was announced. It somehow seems like much longer, and not that long at all, anyone else feel that? Thanks to the breakthroughs with the vaccine, and a pretty fast-paced vaccination program, it does now look like we’re on our way out of the dark. Of course, the UK is extremely privileged to have such vaccine access, and I know that the rest of the world isn’t necessarily in the same position as the UK right now. Rather than getting too optimistic and looking to the future, I wanted to talk about the things I’ve learnt in the last year of the pandemic.

No matter how much time you have, you’ll never get to all the hobbies you want to get to
Just me? I had a list of hobbies that I thought I’d have time to take up in lockdown, but instead I stuck to all my old hobbies. Unlimited time at home, and I still can’t pick up my ukulele.

You can bake too much banana bread
I think a lot of people, and the internet in general, learnt that you can have too much banana bread in your life. You buy bananas with good intentions, and then they sit in the fruit bowl for a week, and then you realise the only option left to you is yet. More. Banana. Bread.

Even if your plans get thrown out the window, you can still make something of your time
I should be in London right now, finishing up my Masters degree. However, thanks to COVID, I’m living with my mum, and I’m working full time. This definitely was not my plan for this year, but I am so lucky that everything worked out really well for me. And even outside of work, I’ve built up my little corner of the internet over the last year, and definitely improved my overall fitness. And, to be honest, at the minute, anything that makes you feel happy or feel better about yourself is doing something worthwhile with your time, even if it’s as simple as reading more, or completing a difficult video game.

Social media is a girl’s best friend
How do you not feel completely starved of human contact in isolation? Twitter! Yes, sometimes that’s not the best or most positive form of human contact that a person can get, but I’ve made some great friends on Twitter, and I stay out of arguments on there.

Walking is good for your mind, body, and soul
At first in the lockdown, I wasn’t really into walking, and I was reluctant to leave the house for anything. After a while of this, it started to get really boring and claustrophobic. I started walking more and more regularly, and now I’m at a point where I can get a decent step count even if I’m having to self-isolate because I’m much more conscious of the importance of moving and keeping active, even if that’s YouTube workouts in the living room.

There’s more to do at home than you think!
I’ve had more clear-outs than I can count, probably written more words than I have in any year before, watched so many shows on Netflix that I’m now struggling to find anything I want to watch, and cooked so many different recipes. I thought that this period of my life would be the most tedious but, to be honest, I have found things to keep me busy, and I have learnt to appreciate what we have at home a lot more.

You can cut your own fringe, and it will only be a small disaster
What more is there to be said? When you’re a person with a fringe and the hairdressers are cut, you have to choose between risking the trim and risking not being able to see.

So there’s some of the things that I’ve learnt over the last year in lockdown. Some silly, some more serious. I think it’s important to try to focus on some of the good things that may have come out of the past year, because it’s very easy to get overwhelmed by the negatives. Some of these things I’ve learnt might be tiny wins, but tiny wins are still absolutely worthy of celebrating. So, in that spirit, what’s something you’ve learnt in the last year, or what’s one of your tiny wins?

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