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How has lockdown changed your routine?

As gyms, pubs and more start reopening, some of us can begin getting back to pre-lockdown routines – but is that what we really want? What have you learnt from lockdown?

The UK going into lockdown meant big changes to the way we live our lives; exercise, visits to the pub, holidays, music – all either cancelled or quickly having to adapt to survive. 

These were sudden and dramatic changes, so how do you feel you’ve adjusted over time?

Events become streams

I’m a huge music lover and usually spend my summers outdoors at festivals and gigs, so 2020 has seemed very empty.

Missing out on all those activities has been a shame, but we’ve now started to see events move to live streamings featuring direct chats with friends and other fans while the artist performs.

We’ve even seen the start of socially-distanced gigs, which has split opinion!

I was hesitant at first, but I can see the benefits of live streams – you have the comfort of your own home, no travel, no cost of flights or trains or hotels, and no need to buy pricey drinks and food!

The interaction isn’t quite the same, and I miss the atmosphere, but I’m pleased there are alternatives.

Could cinema also be forced into a rethink?

Working out the new normal

Gyms began to open last month with social distancing measures put in place, but many workout and fitness classes long since moved online from the safety of your home or garden. 

Has that brought about a more permanent change? As with outdoor events, there are plenty of benefits; cheaper, no travel, time saved.

A friend of mine who’s a personal trainer was devastated when she was forced to leave the gym in March but, by July, she had moved all her classes to the park where she doesn’t need to pay for the use of the gym to train her clients.

She’s now going to continue to use the park instead during the summer, and then consider her options once the weather gets colder and the evenings draw in.

Have your routines and habits changed during the pandemic? How do you think you’ll adapt in the future?

Let me know your experiences in the comments.


I’ve learned that it is very easy to be lazy and to half enjoy the lack of timetable that lockdown has brought. It is always an effort to get ready for things like choir and orchestras, especially after a busy day or when it has been raining and it’s cold and dark. Having made the effort the result is always worth it and one returns home on a high. The empty diary is now filled with regular routine events -same day each week – and were it not for the chaos of construction, life would have been quite dull. I am used to creating on paper and manuscript, so the opportunity has been there to do both. I also walk to the shops more than before since there is nothing to hurry home for. The garden had been tended more. I miss the theatre and the concerts and am sad that these are out of bounds for the foreseeable future. There is compensation to be gained from the DVD alternatives and BBC i Player but it’s not the same. Getting things like car service, haircuts and dentist sorted has been a nuisance and queuing for the bank wasted an hour last time I was there. Face masks have to be remembered when stepping out. I keep one in a pocket at all times.
Getting used to meetings on line has been interesting, but once set up, the results are always disappointing. It is more difficult to concentrate, especially when things get technical.
Until the house is sorted I will not be looking to travel more than necessary, so the lack of holiday destinations has not been a problem, and won’t be until the new year.
Over all I haven’t found lockdown particularly onerous, but the spontaneity has gone out of life, being replaced with the fear of infection and hospital and worse. There is a bunker mentality which is easy to get used to, but still, an uneasy peace reigns and one can’t help dwelling on the tragedy of it all. I am lucky in so may ways. Many have unexpected hardship to worry them. They can’t switch off from the misery that Covid has brought.

yes having kept busy with sewing and my allotment it was not onerous.However, the feeling of being in prison was with me,and although I observed the twelve weeks initially being cautious over Covid19 that fear was and is with me.

I regularly played bowls and was in national competitions – all cancelled. I miss both the games and the social side. We are just looking at resuming in a month or two and that will be very welcome.

I have been persuaded by my family to let them provide my shopping. That was extremely thoughtful but I miss looking round the shops to get inspiration. So I look forward to getting back to doing that.

Regularly seeing the family has also been missed, particularly seeing a fairly new grand daughter who is at the walking stage, so something else to look forward to.

While I have spent more time looking after the garden than normal the novelty does diminish.

So I really can’t wait for restrictions to gradually be relaxed – as long as we still behave responsibly.

But I have no intention of holidaying abroad and I hope others are discouraged.

Lockdown has made very little difference to me as I’m severely socially disabled and cannot work or socialise so I stay in every night and never go to any pubs or clubs or restaurants or cafes or coffee shops or cinemas or anywhere rowdy anyway. But it does mean I can’t travel around as much as I used to to get stuff I need for work on my home which is ongoing and never ends. I thank the Lord up above for the internet as I now depend on it more than ever for ordering stuff I need. But it’s not a great help for everything, so-called “social” media is far too elitist so I don’t bother with it any more. I hope my PC carries on working ok as it would be much harder to get it fixed now and I need it now more than ever. Is there anyone else here anything like me, severely socially isolated because of severe disability?

For the first time since lockdown, I dined at a pub yesterday. We had to book, order and pay using the brewery’s mobile app, which was an unwelcome change to our old ways. That said, our food came promtly and was as nice as ever.

From lockdown, I think many of us have been forced into doing things online that we’d rather do by other means.

It wouldn’t have occurred to me to have a phone with me when going to the pub, although it wouldn’t surprise me if someone else had one with them. One member of my family seems to have been anatomically adapted by an evolutionary process to incorporate the phone in her corpus; if only it could be wired into her central nervous system so we would not have to listen to one side of each interruption and then hear a recitative of the unfolding saga.

I usually have a few record cards in my pocket for writing drinks orders on and I could have used one of those for the food order and left it on the bar.

I am actually wondering whether I shall ever go in a pub again; I’m out of the habit.

I expect there are at least some freehouses where food and drink can still be acquired without any need for a smartphone.

Yes, I think the one a few minutes down the road from us is that sort of pub. They probably have more interesting menus than the brewery-controlled pubs as well.

I suspect it’s the young who are bearing the brunt of all this. Deprived of friends, school, youth clubs, youth activities and being forced into a monastic existence for months can’t have done their socialisation or development any good.

Isolation doesn’t do humans any good, and the young are especially vulnerable.

I don’t get the impression there’s much isolation going on. When I’m out and about I see lots of clusters of younger people and they seem to be in continuous communication with the rest of their cohort. The camera phone has certainly made isolation tolerable even if a bit unnatural. Nevertheless it is worrying if their social development is delayed by these artificial conditions. We need the rising generation to be at least half functional.

Maybe we should feel more for the elderly. Not only deprived of friends and activities but likely to have been kept apart from family. No doubt they are also under much more stress and anxiety as they understand how much more vulnerable they are to the virus.

yes Malcolm r, this has been really difficult not seeing my daughters and being one of the ” old ones”.I have really missed them. Not going out to restaurants,being disabled and over 80 this I felt was challenging. Yes, I missed them greatly at that long twelve week period. Corrie

Since the lockdown in March I have been using the phone far more than ever before and that has gone a long way to compensate for the present situation.

I have not been out for a meal or a drink since early March. Instead of going out for a drink I sometimes stay in for a drink and have a bottle of beer while having a long phone call or video call with friends. I’m going on holiday for a week and might risk having a meal and a drink.

Although the small charities I am involved with have suspended public activities some of us meet up in small groups and work on projects, which is enjoyable. I cannot say that I am missing attending committee meetings. Without them I am able to get on with jobs that I think are important rather leaving a meeting with a list of jobs that others want me to do.

This has been a difficult time for younger members of my family, with three who work in the NHS having to isolate following contact with a coronavirus case. Another has had to postpone a wedding planned for October because of the current uncertainties.

The lockdown has given a lot of folk here in the UK a bit of a taste of what it’s like for folk like me all the time. They’re having to give up going out and “socialising” and some have even had to give up working for a while too, but at least they can still have their partners and kids etc. some of us can’t have any such thing, but just total isolation all the time, they’re the forgotten disabled who are never mentioned anywhere in any media or in any statistics and are far too widely totally ignored by far too many and there’s near enough no awareness of such people at all, but instead nothing but widespread outrageous contempt, especially from those in power and control. And then there’s them who are organising illegal raves just because they can’t stand having to do without their “entertainment” for a while, well tough luck, some of us have to do without any altogether, and do without any work, or social life, or love life etc. And the police should have assistance from the military for breaking up illegal raves. Disability is NOT all white sticks and wheelchairs as far too many still so blindly think. And folk here in the UK don’t know how lucky they are, they’re only under lockdown, some nations have really brutal military martial law. Far too many take far too much for granted, but it can be taken away at any time for all manner of reasons. One thing I learnt long ago is to never take anything for granted.

Mark – I hope you find that corresponding on this site offers some modest consolation for your enforced isolation.

Why don’t you register and join in more Conversations so that you can become a regular member of this community? I am sure you have interesting views on lots of topics.

What a novel way to hold a concert, they look a bit like animals in pens at a farming auction or an agricultural show. And believe it or not I used to help set up concerts and even operate the main mixer which controls all the sound which the audience hears, that was a great sense of power, a bit like driving a really big diesel locomotive with your hands on several thousand horsepower.

Lockdown is fab! It’s the silence from modern life that is most appreciated and a welcome return and recognition of not only what is important in life, but the simplicity. I’ve always had a make do and mend attitude, the penalty of being brought up by someone who grew up in a war, and making the most of what you have and what you can do with it can be rewarding, although 5 hours to unpick one pair of sports trousers was starting to push it. That said I can’t thank Toolstation and Screwfix enough for keeping my projects going.
I can’t see me going back to doing all the social activities or at least the same ones I did before, lockdown has focused on the why more than the when – but am finding the new working arrangements for learning courses and activities a bit of a trial. All in all though there isn’t much I’ve actually “missed”.

Martin McCaskill says:
7 September 2020

Lockdown has been a complete disaster. The government has given its word to help people financially but getting help is an actual farce and the people who control the banks need locking up. I have tried unsuccessfuly to get a Bounce Back Loan Scheme with 3 different banks. The first, Coop Bank says that it will take 3 months to open an account, the second Nat West online application process does,nt actually work and the third bank Capital On Tap advertises these loans but does,nt have any processes in place at all. You cant get through to anyone by phone and emails and not responded to. What a joke.

One thing I find a bit confusing about the current lockdown situation is that we’re told we can meet with up to five other folk but we can’t visit anyone’s household, and a friend of mine keeps inviting me over to their home as I haven’t been there for ages but I’ve had to remind him of the current situation in his area. Does it mean we can meet folk outdoors or what?

One thing I hate about lockdown is that it’s now well nigh impossible to flirt with anyone, as we’ve all got to wear masks you can’t see anyone’s expressions.