Most of the things I learned over the lockdown period weren’t really new – more a rebooting of old interests and habits. Revitalising languishing skills, consolidating stronger ones or acquiring new ones, especially through webinars and courses, have all come into play during this time.
Remote working: Now that working from home has become the new normal, previous posts about alternative ways to work seem all the more prescient. Not saying we’ll do away with the office entirely (or that we should) but really good that organisations are conceding the need to allow for greater flexibility. And that working remotely can actually improve productivity and output.
Blogging: I had been on autopilot since my post in December, getting my head around a new normal of lockdown life. But a one-week WordPress Zoom workshop on topics ranging from understanding audiences, to SEO to creating content plans and editorial calendars, were enough to reinvigorate the writing habit and create comeback posts that somehow tried to make sense of the last four months.
Photography: Thankfully we don’t have to get on a plane to find photogenic materials or to go on a great adventure. Sometimes it really is there right in front of you.
Online courses: I’ve done many during this time, plus webinars and extra reading. They include courses on Covid-19 that may not turn me into an epidemiologist, but certainly make me more well-informed about the disease, the SARS CoV-2 virus, and public health more generally – for example, the processes that are triggered once an outbreak, epidemic and pandemic are identified. FT, NYTimes and LinkedIn webinars have given me access to hear from some formidable opinion-formers and experts.
Keeping up with friends digitally: Strangely (in a nice way) I’ve had school friends make contact through Facebook, and vice versa. It’s also been a time to reconnect and catch up with other good friendships that had languished.
Some healthy habits should be the norm – Such as washing hands (and face), carrying antibacterial wipes and gels (and using them, especially after using ATMs and supermarkets pay points). I’m inclined to add keeping physical distance especially from smokers and joggers who breathe heavily in your face as they fly past. Which brings me to my next point.
Jogging: This is something I love to do and I’ve tried to keep it up during lockdown. The only problem is I think I’m snacking on carbs a bit more, so need to get some better dietary habits going.
Drinking coffee at home: Has been kinder on my wallet as well as tasting a lot better than some of the high-street milk-fuelled concoctions.