One Month In Lockdown

On 23rd March 2020 I celebrated my 8 year anniversary with my boyfriend. However this day also became a monumental date, as this was the day the UK officially went into lockdown. Prior to this, I had already began to take measures and self isolate. I had been limiting my social contact for 14 days, which was eased by the option to work from home, helping to restrict “unessential” contact.

Now as we hit a month in lockdown I realise this pandemic won’t be blowing over as quickly as I hoped. So I am trying my best to remain positive and creating structure to my new daily routine. But as soon as I take a moment to pause, I feel dread and find myself desperately wondering, just how long will this last? I don’t live with my partner so I’m missing him terribly and feeling this out of control is terrifying. I try to reason with myself to keep perspective and acknowledge that this new normal, won’t be permanent. However, I still experience moments of panic, anxiety, tension headaches and at times catch myself spiraling down the “what if’s”, as I think about how nothing about this “temporary lifestyle” is all that “normal”.

I can’t help but worry about my Grandmother and her declining health and when the next time I am able to see her again will be. About my job, my career and all the plans I absently made and hoped for in 2020. Once I ride this wave of emotion, I then find comfort in sweet gestures from regular calls with my family and friends which really do help; where they too echo my thoughts and feelings, and I know that I am not alone. I try and remind myself of my Grandparents’ own unique challenges in their youth, and the strength and bravery of their generation, which instills me with new hope.

So one month in (but 7 weeks working from home), I’m looking at the little things, the things I am in control of and this is what I’ve learned so far:

  • (Pre-quarantine) I tended to not drink a lot (most of the time) and if I’m honest I probably shouldn’t drink that much at all. Alcohol doesn’t agree with me and I’m enjoying not waking up violently ill on the weekends
  • I thrive off 8 hours sleep and love waking up earlier. I do my best work in the morning
  • I’ve rediscovered my enjoyment for reading which shouldn’t be kept purely as a beach holiday luxury
  • I’m taking things more slowly; a habit that shouldn’t be a rarity. I plan to take a couple of days off work soon during lockdown. It can feel like a “waste” to do so whilst I work remotely but time off does us each the world of good (especially with this lovely weather)
  • I really enjoy being active and am finding more balance in how I use my downtime. Daily walks replace my usual time spent on an extra episode I would typically treat myself to, although I still love Netflix
  • I’m strangely enjoying not styling my hair and letting my hair dry naturally (although I wouldn’t say no to a root or colour freshening up!)
  • Physically distancing is not the same as social distancing. I am very comfortable in my own company but the extrovert in me also really values my social time… which I am also happy to do from the comfort of my own home

Although I am experiencing a lot more mood swings and I’ll be the first to admit that some of my days are better than others, I have a lot more gratitude for the life I live. I still wonder just how this pandemic will shape my future decisions, but one thing I do know is that throughout this testing time, each of us are building a lot of resilience.

Just remember, this won’t last forever. Stay at home for your loved ones, so we can get back out sooner and enjoy our precious world.

If you enjoyed reading this make sure to subscribe to keep up to date with what I’m talking about! Also feel free to check out the below:

20 Things That Made Me Smile In March

Touching the Surface of Amsterdam

Kindness Doesn’t Cost A Thing

Daily Blogging In January

I did it! I blogged every day this January and I am so happy that I set myself this challenge. It was tough and it required a lot of planning ; I have a lot of respect for those bloggers out there who produce fantastic content daily whilst also working a full time job!

So what did I learn from this challenge?

Above all it was exciting, I was getting more inspired as the month rolled on. A few months ago I bought a notebook to jot down my blog ideas. The more days I blogged, I found that I was writing ideas in the notebook more and more throughout the month (and on my phone, on post it notes, and in my diary!) I felt so creative and daily blogging really set me up in my ‘blogging stride’. I feel like my posts began to flow better and as a result more of you commented and engaged with my posts! It’s brilliant to hear your thoughts and for people across the world to engage with what I am saying, is amazing. I’m very driven and love writing, but this really motivated me to continue blogging.

Engaging with new people across the blogging community, is so special particularly as we live in a world where people opt for short cuts, so some people may not bother going to the effort of clicking on someone’s blog link! It’s great to see that people do still want to read, and that the blogging market isn’t oversaturated as so many newbies like myself fear. Thank you, it’s so encouraging!

I also appreciated just how much organisation is key to daily blogging (and blogging in general!) It’s hard to blog daily when you return late from work, followed by if you have something social or have other commitments planned. At times this meant I would be posting my content as late as 10pm, and I worry that some of you missed my posts! If I wanted to take new photos for my blog, because the evenings are dark and if I was writing late this meant that photos would be taken much later on that night. Thankfully I was able to rely on some filtering and editing to help me out, to substitute for the lack of natural daylight. Alternatively if I was having a bad hair day and my photos weren’t turning out well, my limited time meant that I had to choose between putting out not my best work, writing something else, or not blogging at all that day. Of course this month that was not an option! Instead I tapped into my ideas notebook and decided to write a new post, allowing me to return to the unfinished posts at a later date, posting them when I was satisfied. So despite some obstacles this month, I continued to blog! I can honestly say that ‘Natalia Talks About’ is a passion I will be continuing throughout 2018 and you should watch this space…

As I go forward into February I plan to blog about 3 times a week as a trial. My confidence in finding my voice and what topics are interesting me in this blog is increasing and I really want to continue to blog regularly. (I love how blogging is like looking back at a diary and portfolio of what I have created.) Blogging a few times a week rather than daily also means that I will have time to do other things I want to do (exercise, be more spontaneous, binge watch TV if I want to!) giving way to more inspiration for posts, having more time to focus on delivering content better, improving my overall blog layout, utilising social media more and continuing to learn how to get the best out of myself, as well for those of you who follow and read my blog.

I hope that you had a good January and oh, we’re halfway through the week! We can do this remember, Good Vibes Only.