By Meghna Amin
In the first instalment of a new Features series reflecting on routine, Meghna explains why creating a routine was so important during her lockdown experience
It’s easy to say Coronavirus turned most of our lives upside down. The pandemic changed our day to day routines, stopping us from leaving the house, removing the slight motivation we had to work or study, and asking us to reconsider what we actually spend our days doing.
At first, it felt like a holiday. From an incredibly privileged position, lockdown provided us with an opportunity to rest, relax and rejuvenate. A chance to catch up on some Netflix, get through your bookshelf, and even pick up a new hobby. The first few weeks consisted of entirely that.
My social life routine has definitely been the most affected part of my routine in lockdown
Waking up whenever I wanted, scrolling for hours on TikTok (definitely a lockdown love), eating at random hours of the day or night. Yet, eventually this lack of routine which had been exactly what I wanted, felt tiresome and boring. The lack of motivation to do anything affected my mood more than the actual pandemic seemed to do – which is why getting myself back into a routine felt key.
The first thing I did was wake up no later than 9am, which for some people seems entirely manageable and normal, yet for me was a bit of a chore. At university, my wake up time would be dictated by nights out, lectures and noisy housemates. Now, there was nothing stopping me from mid-morning lie ins. However, whilst I do hate the sound of my alarm, waking up before the morning has entirely passed definitely had its perks for my mood levels and productivity.
The second routine-changer was limiting my screentime. Wasting hours on TikTok transformed to a 30 minute maximum daily limit, and the same was applied to my other social media channels. Maybe this won’t be as important during term-time (where I actually have less time to waste scrolling), but monitoring my screen time is definitely a good way to remind myself to do other things that don’t involve my phone.
My social life routine has definitely been the most affected part of my routine in lockdown. Making time for friends at uni seems easy enough when they’re only a few minutes walk away, yet when locked down at home, everything seems to change.
Socialising with my friends is definitely the highlight of my day or week, so I was keen to find a way to add it into my lockdown routine. Planning Facetime dates, virtual quiz nights and Netflix parties will hopefully soon be a thing of the past, as socialising will eventually return to normal. Yet, for the foreseeable future, virtual socialising may just have to be part of our routines.
Image courtesy of Kon Karampelas via Unsplash