We’ve had 3 and a half months of lockdown in the UK. It has varied from total lockdown to this kind of lockdown we’re in now. We’re not really locked down anymore but we’re not really allowed to see our friends. It’s been a confusing time for all. And during this time, there have been ups, there have been many downs, but here we are on the other side, easing into some sort of normality. The pubs are now open, town is busy… And if someone brushes past you, it’s no longer acceptable to mutter “there’s a fucking pandemic on?!” Ah, I already miss the passive aggressiveness.
The Bad Times
The lockdown has been tough for a lot of people; those who have lost loved ones; those who have been shielding; domestic abuse victims… There’s been break ups, loneliness, general declining mental health. And many people who haven’t faced such intense or obvious issues have also had a really shit time. What I’m trying to say is that lockdown has kind of sucked, and staying afloat is the best some have managed. And that is absolutely bloody fine.
I won’t lie, I’ve had a few down days. I’ve put too much pressure on myself to do all the things, beating myself up for procrastinating or watching Netflix. I’ve also been getting quite anxious at mundane things (like writing this blog post?!), which is not at all helpful. Being stuck in a bedsit with my boyfriend has also been less than ideal and has put a strain on the relationship. I ended up kind of moving back home, which has had it’s own issues, and I’ve faced some shitty days. But sometimes it’s difficult to process those emotions when others have it worse. Especially considering lockdown has been good for me in many other ways.
In reality, there are always going to be people who have it worse off. I’m not advocating wallowing in self-pity, but accepting that some days might be sad, or unproductive. Some days simply exist to binge watch Modern Family. And THAT IS OK. A lot of y’all need to learn that lesson. Mainly myself. Like I should really give myself some slack for not finishing my entire book as well as 27 other projects.
The Good Times
It’s not all doom and gloom from me today. Or during the past 15 or so weeks. In fact, compared to a lot of people, my lockdown has been relatively successful (hence why I feel so guilty about the bad days. And the good days actually… I’m already going back on the ‘cut myself some slack’ self-advice).
During the lockdown period, I’ve spent time writing my book; I’ve written articles for various publications; created regular content for this blog, and maybe even ‘found myself’. Deep, init. I’ve started to create a social media presence for myself (very slightly… don’t laugh at my measly follower count); I’ve set myself goals and haven’t given up on them (I’ve been extremely prone to this in the past). I’ve also worked in a shop as a ‘key worker’, which has been a positive and a negative, but got me out the house (and allowed me to pay rent), so I’ll keep it in the ‘positives’ section. In a lot of ways, the lockdown has been beneficial to me.
I’m nervous for things to go back to ‘normal’. I have a routine now: I get up early, do some writing, run every other day, eat healthily etc. etc. But as ‘normality’ comes back it’s impossible to stick to that healthy eating, to get up early and run 3-4 times a week… There’s less time in the week to accomplish my goals as well as socialising and going to work. It’s too bloody difficult to fit everything in.
I often think that FOMO can kind of hold me back. I like to be involved, and don’t want to miss out on a good time, and judging by my levels of productivity in lockdown, maybe FOMO is holding me back. So what happens now? Do I go back to being busy? Do I slowly give up on my goals? or do I make ‘normality’ work for me?
It’s been a real learning curve even just writing this post, I’ve realised that my obsession with productivity is not healthy. It doesn’t leave room for sleep or like enjoying my fucking life sometimes, and I need to stop feeling guilty for not working 24/7. Quite exhausting really. I blame capitalism and a Tory government.
In conclusion (this isn’t an essay, hun) maybe I shouldn’t go to every single social event for the sake of it. Maybe I do need to appreciate nights in a bit more, and use these times to write my book etc. But what I’ve learnt most is that I need to chill the fuck out.
Phew, great therapy session this. How has your lockdown been?
Header photo from Lisa Fotios x