I’ve lost track how many days we have been in lockdown in total. 208? 210? 220?
To be fair, all days run into each other except for my work days which are on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays. They bring me a little bit of variety with meetings and colleague catch ups here and there. Work breaks up the monotony of just thinking about lockdown and when I’m going to see my family again.
So I started thinking of all the new habits that have formed over the last 18 months and decided to write a list. Here they are:
Not planning anything beyond today:
It’s a given that I’ll be at home any time of the day or night so I agree to everything. There’s no point of making excuses. “Oh sorry, I’ll be out that day!” Out? Where? You’re at home.all.the.time.
All plans have been changed anyway so it’s pointless to make any new ones as there’s no concept of ‘future’. We don’t even know when we’ll be out of lockdown. I say yes to everything until the very moment I crack the sads, get pissed off then that’s when I tell people I can’t make it to their online catch-up. Many times, really you just can’t be bothered speaking to anyone so I’ve been upfront and honest with them. “Sorry, do you mind if we change our catch up? I’m feeling sad and teary today, I can’t think straight, I won’t be good company.”
Saturday morning takeaway coffee and toasted ham and cheese toastie at the park
This is what I do with my husband to watch the dogs running around and exchanging pleasantries with the locals (except the unmasked who we give evils to). In the past, we used to do different activities together such as attend cafes, restaurants, concerts, movies, go travelling etc. Now we are with each other a lot longer but escaping together outside the house for an hour every Saturday is something we both look forward to every week. It just gives us something new to talk about; something new to see. A change of scenery – even though it’s the same park, same people.
Cheese and Wine
Saturday and Sunday afternoon cheese and crackers and a glass of wine; sometimes this is also on Fridays. (This hardly ever happened before covid or on average once every couple of weeks). I’ve drunk more wine in the last 18 months than I have in previous years.
Increased My Coffee Intake
On average 4 cups of coffee per day (with half teaspoon of coffee). An indulgence is flavoured coffee once a day in the morning.
Sundays in Bed for Most of the Day
Hubby brings in coffee to bed on weekends where I just stay in bed for many hours reading. Some days I can’t even be bothered getting out of it dozing throughout the day.
Putting my pyjamas on about 4:30 in the afternoons after work or on particularly low days on weekends, I’ll put the pyjamas on way earlier.
You have to understand that not being able to get out and about; see family or make plans SAPS the life out of you. You have every intention of doing “STUFF” or being “productive”; building your business; writing your book or whatever it is your intention is but the IDEA that you are effectively constrained in other ways plays with your mental health and wellbeing in other ways. So you just go with the flow. You’ll have your good days but you’re going to have bad days too. I don’t see it as laziness.
Jogging and Morning Walks at the Local Park
Morning walks or jogs to start day doing 10K steps. Also changing listening to podcasts to more music in recent times. I’ve stopped listening to American marketing, productivity, entrepreneurship or business gurus telling me that I’m not living my life unless I have to build some marketing funnel. I’ve been listening to more music and short stories instead.
Watching more YouTube than ever before mainly travel shows, French shows or lectures on all different subjects for personal learning. Watching more shows in French than English too. I’ve completely changed my viewing habits to nothing American anymore to more European.
Chatting with Friends on the Phone
No Zoom. No Teams. Nothing online.
Telephone conversations with friends and family. Luckily I have friends who just call whenever they want and I answer the call and have long chats. I LOVE long chats on the phone because there’s always laughter and they make me feel really good – and not zapped out like being on screen.
Less thinking about work related stuff. Doing more in the hours I have. In fact, even though I do enjoy it, it’s not really front of mind anymore. I’ll do my best work in the hours that I’m meant to work but I won’t get stressed out over things I can’t control. I think it’s made me more productive this way because I can approach my work with humour and way more open to new ideas without feeling that everything has to be exact and perfect.
Eating More Sourdough Bread
Buying sourdough bread once a week to toast thick slices to slather butter snd marmalade on them (never used to eat marmalade unless we were travelling). I’m loving this new breakfast but I know that it’s not healthy for me.
Car Battery Constantly Charging
Charging up the car battery. I’ve lost track how many times I’ve had to do this as the car doesn’t get used anymore so battery runs flat. I’m now an expert in charging and changing car batteries.
More Time Learning Stuff I Don’t Really Need to Learn But Want to Learn
Spending time learning new stuff. Eg learned French, learned to jog and do the Couch to 5K (now doing 10K) and learning Morse code for no reason at all except to pass the time.
More Time Reading
Been reading a lot more (onto my 59th book so far this year). I’m spending less time on Netflix – in fact, I hardly watch it or television – not as much as I used to in the past.
I started the YouTube book reviews which have been becoming more regular on my channel although admittedly, at times they’re a hard slog to do however, I do like the interaction in the comments. I’m amazed at how slowly the channel has been building and how some comments say, “I don’t know why you don’t have more followers than you do!” and every time I read that, get the heebeejeebees about it being the LAST thing I want. To me it’s just another way of getting my thoughts of the book out to the world: I don’t want to build a business or a YouTube following for it! Oh, the pressure of that. No thanks.
Spending Money Only on Groceries and Pretty Much Nothing Else
No spending on anything except a weekly grocery shop that husband goes to the supermarket to do (I don’t do supermarket shopping). Maybe I’ll buy some books. That’s about it.
Eating Home Cooked Meals
Eating more home cooked food as we hardly if ever get takeaway. Dinner is a meat/fish and salad/veggies every night and takes no longer than 30 minutes to make.
Promoting Others than Myself
Lost interest in writing a lot about learning and development anymore unless it’s my own. Or, I’m promoting other people’s work I admire and respect and who have done the same for me in years past. It’s time for me to spotlight others great work especially if they might be finding work difficult at this time.
My Cat My Saviour
Every morning, I play with the cat (pretend fighting) and then we run around the house playing chasey before work starts and after my morning walk/jog. Afterwards, he goes for a nap while I start work. Without fail. This has been our daily routine.
Morning daily journal. Without fail. I’ve got the lockdown diaries all recorded.
French Classes & Chats with Friends
Classes every Monday night for the last 18 months PLUS weekly chats with my French friend who lives in Barcelona every Thursday.
Twitter has broken down the wall I had for it to be only for personal learning networks to now a place where I rant and rave about politics. In all honesty, the situation of the world has made me angry so it’s been the place to vent knowing full well that it distances me from some people who have stopped interacting with me there. I only see a point in the near future that I’ll get off this platform completely but before then, oh man, am I going to let loose with the rants. I’ll only quieten with a change of government in Australia.