We have all changed our lifestyles during the pandemic, as we has little choice. But whilst many of us hate our new routines, there may still be some advantages taken from the past year when we eventually return to some level of normality. We thought it a good time to look at some habits to keep after the pandemic.
Early in the pandemic, there was a real community spirit that was perhaps at least partially lost in subsequent lockdowns as patience wore thin. Then expired. Part of that for me was using local services more as an alternative to the big supermarkets, where danger may lurk. Over the past year i have used local butchers more, have had a greengrocer deliver produce and also ordered eggs from a local farm. And it feels good to do it too, seeing your business go to someone with a face. With many small businesses inevitably struggling right now, do try and support who you can as often as possible.
Despite finding myself stuck at home alone for the past year and more, i reckon i have talked to more people than at any other time in my life. From government-approved walks with a friend in a bubble, to Zoom calls, the podcasts I do, online chats and more, it has not stopped! And that is good. Especially for men, who tend not to talk about problems as much as women. Hopefully after normality returns, there will still be a desire to stay in touch with friends and family, even if we cannot get to see them in person. I have regrets like most of us that i have let friendships drift in the past due to a lack of effort.
At first i lowered the amount of exercise i got when the first lockdown occurred as i was not walking to the shops a few times a week. And also, my weekly badminton game was cancelled. In fact i have only played for about three months of the past twelve. But eventually there was a desire to get out and get the heart pumping. So now i try and do a long walk every Saturday. Hopefully i will keep doing this even when i can play badminton again and feel normality return to my shopping. The older i get, the more important it becomes to get some exercise at least a few times a week. Even if you just walk round the block once, it is worth it. I now look after a dog three days a week, so that helps get me out too.
Bring stuck at home, it feels like i have had too much time some days, when filling time has seemed stressful. But the past year has certainly made me think about how i use my time. Perhaps i have thought about it too much at times! But we can take something positive from having to restructure our working days. On how to use time to our maximum benefit, to use it to greater fulfilment. Definitely something to think about anyway.
The pandemic was a real eye-opener to me. It made clear to me how i was ignoring my perilous financial situation. I have made big steps to put that right over the past 12 months. I still have work to do. But what i learned from all of this, is that i cannot turn a blind eye to my bank balance in the future. I must learn to say no to things if i cannot afford them. I will have to make sacrifices. Top of my desires is the need to continue to learn how to use my money better and budget. Recently, I have cut out useless subscriptions and thought harder how to spend the money i earn. I hope this continues well into the future.
For those that have used spare time to thrown themselves into their passions or even taken up a new hobby, do not stop once normality returns! Many of us have learned to get more out of our time. and what better way than being creative and indulging in a passion.