Adjusting to the new normal in the wake of the global health crisis has been tough for everybody. I’ve personally struggled with not being able to socialize face to face, experience major events like festivals, and travel near and far. Having said that, there are definitely some things I don’t miss about pre-quarantine life.
How hectic my schedule was
Living in England, the lifestyle is very fast-paced and typically focused on working long hours in the week with weekends off. Now that employees are on furlough or working from home, those who are self-employed have less work (or none at all) and only essential workers are allowed to go out to workplaces, most people are at home the majority of the time. To be honest, it’s been nice to take my foot off the gas a little bit.
Not having enough time for myself
Two months ago, not having enough time in the week for self-care came hand in hand with how hectic my schedule used to be. Because I’m working less as a freelancer, I can now nap, rest, and relax more frequently, and do you know what? It feels great.
Not being able to meet up with loved ones regularly
I also don’t miss not having enough time in the week to see friends or family because of everything else going on in my life. Even though virtual catch-ups are never going to be as good as physical ones, I’m still super thankful that we have apps like FaceTime and Zoom to keep us all connected during these unprecedented times. I’ve actually spoken to my friends and family more in the last month than I have in the six months prior. Needless to say, weekly video calls been a wonderful way to keep us all going.
Not having time for exercise
As a business owner pre-isolation, I found it really difficult to find the time to exercise. Now, because everyone is being advised to stay home, I’m itching to do a YouTube workout or home workout DVD so that I can get my body moving (especially when it can only move to go for a daily walk or weekly grocery shop). This means I’m exercising much more regularly than I usually would and my mind and body feel better for it.
Not eating very well
Instead of eating out a couple of times a week where I might be tempted to grab some fast food on my way home or have a cafe treat with my daily coffee, quarantine life has given us no choice but to make home-cooked meals. My waistline and energy levels have never felt so relieved.
Never having any money
Because of the fact that we’re not going out, receiving help from the government regarding wages, and mortgages have been postponed, most of us are also managing to save money right now, especially because we’re saving on little things, like buying lunch out or going to the cinema on date night. Bonus.
How ungrateful I was for things
Even though I try to practice gratitude daily, I don’t think I realized just how ungrateful I was for certain things until lockdown was put in place. For instance, I definitely took for granted being able to catch a 90-minute plane to Paris—or even just meet up with a group of friends for post-work drinks. As soon as quarantine is over, I’m going to be much more appreciative of the things we haven’t been able to do.
How uncaring strangers could be
Another positive thing to come from self-isolation is that it’s making us care more about other people. It’s also making us all more mindful of each other, from physical awareness as we’re doing our weekly food shop in supermarkets to checking up on our family members’ mental health. I think we’re all going to be kinder humans as a result.
How unappreciated doctors and nurses were
Speaking of kindness, doctors and nurses were appreciated somewhat pre-quarantine. However, this is now on a whole other level thanks to the workers who have been on the frontline of the pandemic, risking their lives to save others. They are now being highly praised and recognized instead of athletes and celebrities, and we will never forget their sacrifice.
How health and hygiene wasn’t the number one priority
Pre-pandemic, it was easy to get our priorities mixed up and forget what was truly important—our health and the health of those we love. When something as substantial as this happens, it really puts everything in perspective and makes you realize that health comes first. I think we will take all of these lessons we’ve learned forward when we come out of the other side of this—and appreciate normal life more than ever.
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