I think it is safe to say that nobody would have wished for the events of the past few months. 2020 has, on the whole, been a complete catastrophe from the start, and we are only just halfway into it. Having said that, I am trying to see the positives in any situation, and there have been some unexpected silver linings from lockdown. These are the positive changes to my life since lockdown.
Prior to lockdown, for over a year, I hadn’t been exercising at all. I was feeling so lethargic and rubbish, and I knew I should workout but I just didn’t have the motivation at all to do it. I felt too heavy and self-conscious to even get into my fitness clothing, and so I just convinced myself it was fine not to exercise. Once lockdown happened, I suddenly had all this extra time in the morning when I usually would have been taking the kids to nursery and school, and driving myself to work, so I decided to go for it. I dug out my Charlotte Crosby workout DVD and I started doing it each weekday morning.
I have been pretty strict with myself and I have noticed a difference, not majorly to my body as I have been pretty lax with my eating habits lately, and snacking too much, but definitely with my general fitness levels. I am not getting out of breath doing simple tasks, and my mental health has improved as well. I feel more awake and energised in the mornings when I workout, and I actually miss doing it on my rest days. I feel like a brand new person to be honest!
Exploring Local Areas
As we haven’t been able to travel up until recently, we had to improvise and ended up discovering some local treasures, right on our doorstop. Now that we are able to drive out to other places, we are still staying fairly close to home and are appreciating the places local to us so much more than we did before.
We are within driving distance to so many beautiful places including Corfe Castle, Kingston Lacy and the Jurassic Coast, as well as the beautiful Bournemouth and Poole beaches and the New Forest. We have really been making the most of our weekends together during lockdown and have been going on plenty of walks and days out locally lately – it has been really lovely, actually.
As well as appreciating the local area, I have also been appreciating our home so much more. I have always been quite a homebody and love nothing more than getting into my pjs and chilling out in bed or on the sofa, but since we were confined to our four walls, I have really begun to appreciate all the things we have in our home, from enough space to take some time to myself when I need to, to a back garden with areas to entertain ourselves and visitors. We may only be renting our home at present, but it has definitely made me realise what I actually find important in a house, which will help when we are buying.
I have always loved to read, but I hadn’t been making time for it, favouring blogging events and late night Netflix binges over dipping into a good book. During lockdown, I have prioritised reading, especially as the opening of the libraries loomed closer and I knew I would soon need to return all those books I took out just before lockdown. I have read some brilliant books over the past few months, and have a big TBR pile from my birthday in May, to keep me going for awhile longer. I want to put reading higher up on my list going forward, as it helps me to unwind and to escape from the events going on around us, if only for a little while.
One of the best things to come out of lockdown for me, is a better mindset when it comes to my money. I have always been really careful when it comes to my finances, and I always knew how much money I had and how much I could spend, but I will admit, I was guilty of sometimes spending money that I had, just for the hell of it.
During lockdown, we lost the tenants in the property that we own, when they decided to move out in mid-May. We had previously relied on that money to pay our own rent, so it was a bit of a blow when it happened. We are fortunate to have both continued to work during the pandemic so, after moving some money around and having a look at our spendings and savings, I was able to work out a way to continue paying our rent without the rental income.
It has meant that we haven’t had any spare money recently, but that has simply meant that I have been more conscious of what I used to spend my money on, and what we actually ‘need’ over what we would like to have. It has been quite an eye-opening experience for me, and I think I will continue to be more careful with money once we come out of the other side of this.
Have you found any positives, to come out of lockdown?