All of us have to changed our habits considerably over the past year and more. But whilst we despise some of the norms that have replaced our old lives, i hope we have learned some important lessons too. I certainly have. So let’s look if there are some lockdown habits to keep. Especially when looking at the financial aspects of our affairs.
In some respects I have struggled more with waste during lockdown. This is because i used to do small, regular food shops. With the risks now involved in shopping and the need to social distance, i have for the past year switched to buying less regular big shops. Unfortunately it is harder to plan to use my fresh food produce as i have a fairly small fridge and freezer. Storage is restricted.
I had a wake up call and that was the pandemic. It made me aware that my debts were not going to remove themselves and i had to do something about them. And what i had to do was be proactive and face my debts head-on, not turn a blind eye and be more financially savvy. So i have made huge changes over the past year. Admittedly the inability to have a social life has helped. But i hope when normality returns i carry on my good practices. And that includes saying no to doing things that i do not have money for. Spending what i earn, and not a penny more. And to talk to creditors and come to arrangements about dealing with debts you may struggle to pay off.
The last year has seen me discover the webcam on my computer! I have talked in the past year more than in the previous decade. From Zoom calls to podcasts to simple texts checking in with people. It has been a little positive during the restrictions of the past year that people have communicated in different ways. and they have looked out for others when in the past perhaps they took them for granted. Don’t stop, always keep in regular touch with people you want in your life, wherever they are in the world.
I have bought from my local greengrocer in 2020, something i rarely did before. A farm has delivered fresh eggs to my door. I have frequented takeaways and restaurants that have adapted to the circumstances. And i intend to follow these trends. Move away from the convenience of supermarkets when i can. Support businesses that are on the edge financially and need support the most. It should not just be about where is cheapest sometimes. If you can afford to, support local businesses.
It has been an eye opener to many companies that working in an office is not always a necessity. Millions of workers across the country can do their job from their living room, and do not need to slog across the city and spend thousands of pounds a year to do the same work in a different location. And workers have shown that they can be trusted to do their work without someone looking over their shoulder all the time.
I have had my lulls, but i have tried more than ever to get some long walks in over the past year. And it is not just for the exercise. It cannot be underestimated how damaging it can be mentally to be stuck at home for long, long periods of time. And getting out has definitely improved my state of mind. My mental health has improved, and i got plenty of steps in too, which is a nice bonus! I intend to keep the walks with friends going in the long term.