What have we learned from lockdown?

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Colette Cooper

AS LOCKDOWN restrictions continue to ease, little by little, each day, I believe it’s beneficial to reflect and consider what we can take away from these strange months spent at home. With fewer amenities and activities to keep us distracted, perspectives have certainly altered.

Remote Working
In the run up to lockdown, it seemed as though remote working was not too common—with the exception of certain job roles—and working within an office space was more familiar.

With the rise of technology—combined with our lockdown experience—it’s evident that companies have started to reconsider the way in which they utilise their workspace, as most interactions can be done efficiently online. Moreover, employers may now be starting to consider if there are more efficient or profitable ways to utilise space and materials, while providing employees with the option to work from home.

Fortunately, the rise of remote working may have many benefits, such as less pollution caused by daily commutes, to less stress overall! Although remote working is not everyone’s cup of tea, perhaps we now have more flexibility and choice in the matter.

Counting our blessings
While reflecting on the pre-lockdown days, it’s obvious that most of us didn’t consider sitting in a café or going to the pub with friends to be a big deal—it was just a simple activity.

Like anything in life, it’s easy to take things for granted. With any luck, we will continue to consider how lucky we are to have opportunities such as this. From dancing in a crowd at a music festival, ordering a favourite meal at a restaurant, or going on a road trip with friends. It really is an honour to wake up each day and plan memorable, fun-filled activities with those we love and cherish.

We have more to give
Before lockdown, we were perhaps too often distracted by plans and events with other people, to consider our own needs, capabilities, and talents. While having more time to ourselves, we were given a greater opportunity to explore the things we are most enthusiastic about, or what we really want to achieve in life.

For me, lockdown has been the perfect time to try out some new and inspiring activities. I have also managed to surprise myself with what I’m capable of achieving when I put my mind to it.

Not only did we have the chance to explore our own personal abilities, but also what we could do on behalf of others. Making various sacrifices throughout the year—to protect others such as the vulnerable and the NHS—has, I believe, provided an excellent reminder of how important it is to ‘go the extra mile’ and do something positive for others. From simple gestures to huge sacrifices, we should always take the time to put others before ourselves, particularly those who are less fortunate.

Loving is living
It’s natural to become a little too caught up in our own lives and forget to appreciate our closest friends and family members.

Something fairly positive to come from lockdown is the realisation that a sense of community and togetherness is paramount. For instance, it could be said that the experience has taught us who are real friends are, because although there hasn’t always been the opportunity to meet up in person, technology has made it easier to reach out to others with the press of a button.

It was easy for many of us to feel a sense of isolation during this time, but with the continuous help, support and reassurance we have received from loved ones, the sense of isolation was often eased. So, as lockdown comes to a close, let’s not forget who was there to lift and guide us through it.

Colette Cooper is a journalist, blogger and creative writer

PIC: MATT SEYMOUR

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