Staying at home: Lessons from Lockdowns
It's time to listen to what you have to say.
Anyone who has been following the La Española blog regularly will remember our helpful handful of articles on ‘Staying at Home’ - a series dedicated to getting you through lockdown sane, safe and smiling.
It seems like only yesterday we were exploring topics like Working at Home and Staying Active, and then How to Stay Connected and How to Entertain Your Family as the weeks went on. But those of us working remotely are getting used to our new routines, and we are more or less familiar with communicating with others and entertaining ourselves under the various restrictions. So, what’s left to talk about?
As we approach (what we hope is) the end of the UK’s third Lockdown, we think it’s time to take a step back and listen to what you have to say.
Your Lockdown lessons
In conversations over the last couple of months we’ve been asking you how things are going, how you’re dealing with the restrictions and what you’ve learned from life in lockdown. We found that while, there are a lot of challenges to face, most of you were able to focus on something positive - which, at its heart, is exactly what our Staying at Home series is all about.
“I’m doing okay now but it was really hard at the beginning. [We] weren’t set up to work from home so I was one of the people talking to clients from my bedroom. It’s not healthy to work where you sleep and relax. It totally blurs the boundaries. I also ended up working crazy hours trying to make up for delays that weren’t even my fault. Now I give myself a strict cut off point in the evenings and put a blanket over my work area (to create a visual divide) as well as taking a full hour for lunch with a short walk, no matter what the weather is like. So I suppose my lockdown lesson is that I have really learnt the value of taking time out for me and not feeling guilty because of it!” - Abbie
Such an important aspect of working from home is to maintain clear separation between our professional and personal lives, even if that’s as simple as a blanket over the laptop. And we shouldn’t have to feel guilt for looking after ourselves and ensuring we have the time we need to recharge. Well said, Abbie!
Sam’s Good Eating Habits
“The thing I learned from lockdown one was that I am very reliant on structure. Losing all of my daily routines had a big impact on my mental health and I found myself eating really badly. I developed lots of bad habits like [eating] junk food, eating too late before bed, skipping meals or eating out of boredom. I was really quite unhappy with the way I felt in the summer. By the time it came to lockdown two I was desperate not to make the same mistakes. Although my daily routines were still different I was settling into new routines with work and finding the structure that I needed for set meal times. Using a food journal app was so helpful for getting some control back in my diet too. I’d recommend that if anyone is feeling the same.” - Samantha
If you found that lockdown was a shock to the system then there’s two things the La Española team want you to know. Firstly, you aren’t alone. Secondly, we’ll be here with as much advice and guidance as we can muster - from tips on resting junk food to crafting healthy feel-good recipes.
“Staying fit and active is my life. I am a personal trainer for work. It is my passion and all my friends are into fitness and sports. When they told us the gyms were closing I was gutted especially because I live on my own and a big part of my human connection was through the gym. Such a massive part of staying motivated was taking part in online classes. I did not think I would like them at all but they are really good. I have made new friends from the online classes and have a group chat for one. One change for me is that I will probably keep doing visual classes after things get back to normal.”
Remaining motivated and keeping fit was always going to be a challenge at a time when we were being told to stay at home. For many people like Mani it has been crucial to discover new ways to stay active. If you’re struggling to focus on your health then check out our blog for inspiration, or you can also drop us a message on Facebook or Instagram.
Jenny & Tara’s New Diet
“Me and Tara both love cooking but found ourselves bored eating the same foods all the time. We love cooking but we aren’t very imaginative lol. With the extra free time on our hands we started challenging each other to make the best meals, usually on a specific theme or with specific ingredients. Then around September Tara decided to explore plant based recipes and she got really into it. She’s quite persuasive when she gets going, so now we’re both happily vegan...two months and counting!” - Jenny & Tara
We checked in with Jenny recently to see how she was getting on with her new diet and except from an episode at Christmas where she tells us “some chocolate might have happened” both Jenny and her partner are going strong with their new diet.
Interested in veganism? We take a look at what is driving so many people to plant-based living in our post, ‘Where are all the vegans coming from?’.
Craig’s Nature Trails
“I really found the time to connect with my son while furloughed on a level that I couldn’t manage while I was working. He’s at that age where everything is an adventure and I’m really grateful for the time we have spent together going on nature walks and learning about the environment and foraging. Your olive oil made a great dressing for our foraged leaves.” - Craig
Sometimes it’s easy to sideline or even take for granted the company of those we live with because we ‘see them every day’, but taking the time to truly connect with them is incredibly rewarding - for all involved.
Our Silver Linings
There is no denying that the global pandemic crisis has delivered a devastating blow to humanity. Many of us around the world have had uncomfortable and unexpected challenges and changes thrust upon us. However, what we aim to do here is not to focus on the negative narrative, but to celebrate the ways in which people have faced, accepted and overcome those challenges and changes, creating positive arcs to their personal stories.