We’ve been on a rollercoaster for the last four months. It can be categorised (trivially) as; the banana bread obsession period, pre Netflix’s Tiger King, post Netflix’s Tiger King, Disney + release, the weekly pub quiz era (welcoming suggestions for more trivial lockdown categories).
I finished university THREE months ago now and to be honest, I’d like to know where those three months have gone?
So, amongst the graduate job applications in a very uncertain economy, there has been plenty of time to pause and reflect. I think we will probably all emerge from this period of time as a slightly different person, with a different perspective, a different way of thinking. Let’s call them the lockdown lessons.
IT’S OKAY TO RE-EVALUATE AND CHANGE YOUR PATH. Let’s start with a big reflection. I guess specifically I’m talking to you graduates (especially if you’re job searching). Who knew we’d be entering the job market as fresh graduates whilst COVID-19 is making its impact upon the economy? So, I’ve had more time to write, a passion that I knew was there but I’ve rediscovered my love, I’ve sought something exciting (local newspaper columnist over here yknow) – I think it’s just made me realise that I want this to be my path and I’ll navigate it to be successful. A point to note here (especially for you graduates) is that everyone has their own path – yes, graduate schemes are great and they are the ‘norm’, but that doesn’t mean it has to be your route.
WALKING DAILY IS A GOOD IDEA. As we were granted one walk a day, it was the highlight – I don’t think my dog has ever been walked so much. If I haven’t left the house, I tend to hit a low point around 3pm and lose my ability to focus or just generally feel a bit ‘meh’. My Fitbit is also pretty disappointed in me when I don’t do the 120 steps every hour so I tend to make that up with a 45min/1hr walk with a podcast to clear my head (you can read about my favourite podcasts here). I feel better for it and I’m holding myself accountable here, as we ease back into normal, I want to maintain the ‘self-care’ walks.
I’M A FAN OF ONLINE EXERCISE. I’ve surprised myself with this one, but the online fitness resources that have been available during lockdown are amazing – I’ve been following real-time workout videos from my faves, Tally Rye and Zanna van Djik (it also helps that my sister is a pretty good personal trainer these days). But even with yoga, I feel that I challenge myself more at home because no-one will notice if I potentially fall over. I will be excited to get back into the gyms/yoga studios but at the moment, online at-home exercise is treating me pretty well.
KEEP THE REGULAR ONLINE SOCIAL SLOTS. It’s a fine balance between feeling lonely and feeling okay with being ‘alone’, separated from your partner/friends/family etc – there’s not one of us who won’t have been affected in one way or another. It’s easy to end up on the borderline, not really knowing what is best to do. The novelty of an online pub quiz where you tested each other’s knowledge every week might have worn off, but check in with your friends, keep the online social slots and cherish the time you have in their company.
ONE MORE THING – Pick a morning (or stay up all night) and go watch a sunrise, you might feel jet lagged for the rest of the day but you won’t regret it.