Monday 05 Oct 2020 Article

The TakeawayWhat Can We Learn from 2020?

Lessons from Life in Lockdown

What Can We Learn from 2020?

Since lockdown measures were first announced on 23rd March, we have had to adapt to a new way of life.

This new, unfamiliar world has been mentally, emotionally and financially taxing for many people across the nation.

However, there are some positive life lessons we can learn from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Value of Face-to-face Interaction

During lockdown, we lost many face-to-face conversations and interaction; they were replaced by zoom quizzes, phone calls and WhatsApp group chats.

While we’re incredibly lucky to have the technology to communicate virtually, it doesn’t replace the value face-to-face conversations and human interaction. 

Seeing and speaking to people in person allows us to read their facial expressions more clearly and understand their tone of voice; virtual communication often doesn’t allow for this.

This has made communication harder for many people in both their personal and professional lives.

Going forward, it’s crucial that we value and appreciate social interaction even more so than before. 

There are many ways we can do this, including:

  • Replace work zoom calls with meetings
    Do you have a work zoom call coming up? Why not try and organise a COVID-safe, face-to-face meeting instead – face-to-face meetings often allow creativity to flow more easily and make communication more efficient.

  • Organise COVID-safe catch-ups with friends and family
    It’s important for our mental health and wellbeing that we maintain contact with our loved ones. If you can, maybe try and organise an evening where you see your friends or family face-to-face to catch up.

  • Remember to get off your phone and appreciate those around you
    When you do see people in person, make the most of it. This is more important now than ever as for many of us, our social interaction is limited. Try to engage with the conversation, instead of getting distracted by your phone.

The Importance of a Work-life Balance

During the pandemic, many employees across the nation were working from home for some of, if not all of, lockdown.

For most, this was completely foreign territory.

One of the main struggles of working from home is maintaining a healthy work-life balance.

Click here to read more about working from home, and overcoming the challenges that come with it.

As we gradually return to working in the office, it’s important that we continue to maintain the work-life balance we have worked hard to achieve.

Certainty is an Illusion

During lockdown, one of the most common feelings among society has been uncertainty.

Statistics and rules are constantly changing, making many people feel unsure and on-edge.

If the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s that certainty is an illusion – we never know for sure what is going to happen.

If you were asked one year ago if there was going to be a global pandemic in 2020, you would have most likely said no and felt quite confident in your answer.

With this in mind, there are several things we can do to help mitigate the risk of uncertainty:

  • Risk Analysis
    One of the first things you should do before making any large decisions is Risk Analysis. Risk Analysis is designed to help identify risks and mitigate them. You can click here for an article that delves deeper into Risk Analysis, it’s benefits, and how you can implement it into your role.

  • Research-based decisions
    Once you have carried out Risk Analysis and have identified potential next steps, think about their potential consequences – is this the right thing to do or could you do something better?

  • Back-up Plan
    Even the best thought-through plans can face issues which is why it’s beneficial to have one, or several, back-up plans ready. This allows you to make decisions with a level-head instead of making quick, spur of the moment decisions while panicking that the first plan didn’t work.

While there are many lessons we can learn from life in lockdown, one of the most important ones is to always look after our mental health. You can only work to your full potential if you are in the right mindset. 

For more information and guidance about what we can do to shield our mental health in times of crisis, click here.

“Your mental health is a priority. Your happiness is an essential. Your self-care is a necessity.”

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