Apr 14, 2021

Lessons A Year In Lockdown Has Taught Me

It has officially been over a year since official lockdown was announced the UK. Excuse me, what?!

I'm sure many of you can agree when I say lockdown has had many ups and downs and it has definitely opened my eyes and taught me a lot about myself and how I view situations. It's been one big emotional rollercoaster but it's definitely shaped me into a different person, in a positive way.

Since the UK finally returns to a sense of normality this week and lockdown is slowly becoming a thing of the part, I thought it would be good to reflect on what I've realised over the past 365 days.

Be More Present

One of the biggest breakthroughs I've learnt is that I live a lot of my life in my head rather that enjoying the present moment. I tend to either be dwelling on the past or thinking about the future and ultimately that's caused me to experience a lot of unwanted anxiety. Although it seems simple, I've come to realise that there is no way to change the past and that tomorrow isn't even promised, so I've become more grateful for the here and now which is really grounding and allows me to check in with my feelings a lot better.

The present moment is what creates your past and also influences the future, so by choosing to be fully present and content you'll create better experiences and memories for yourself.

Life is unpredictable

This definitely goes without saying. You could be the most organised person in the world with such a clear vision of how you want things to go but life comes at you fast. Literally nobody could have prepared for a worldwide pandemic but it's how we react and view situations when things go wrong which determines the level of impact it has on us.

I've always been an optimistic person and thankfully I can always seem to find positives to every negative and I think that's important. I'm not fully brushing off the fact that something completely terrible has happened but I’m being rational. For example, while lockdown has been terrible and I've not been able to see friends or family, it's given me time to take a step back and self-reflect, it's given me time to work on my goals and I also know that this won’t last forever and that one day I'll be able to hug my family, go out with my friends and travel the world again.

Life is a journey, whether it's a good or bad one starts with how you view it.

It's okay not to be okay

While I've tried to stay optimistic, my mental health has definitely suffered during this pandemic. It's inevitable that anxiety, confusion, pessimism and negative thoughts can come to us without warning - it's our subconscious, irrational brains way of protecting us from problems we've created in our heads.

We're all human and there is no human ever to walk this earth that is happy 24/7, even though some people may seem it. Some days we feel on top of the world and the next we feel like crap. Sometimes we're so optimistic about our futures and then others we feel like we're stuck. This is so normal. I go through these peaks and troughs quite regularly and I used to criticise myself so much for it. I've now learnt to be much more gentle with myself and accept my emotions rather than trying to shrug it off or over-analyse why I'm feeling a certain way. Sometimes all you need is a good cry, a nap, or a takeaway to feel like yourself again. It's important to give yourself the time you need and to remember that feelings aren't permanent and happier times will come.

Focus on what's important to you.

The past year has really made me re-think what I place as a priority. I used to take small things for granted such as being able to see my family whenever I wanted, going out with my friends and hopping on a plane to travel the world freely. The saying "you don't realise what you've got until it's gone" is so true and it's a shame it's taken this to realise it.

Despite it taking me 23 years, the main point is that I finally do realise this and it will shape how I act and view experiences and opportunities for the rest of my life. I call my family so much more now, I let the people closest to me know how much I love them, I've let go of any resentment I've been holding against people in my past. It's the little things in life that hold the most power and make life precious.

Know When To Place Healthy Boundaries

One thing I never realised about myself until self-reflecting is that I never placed boundaries in my life. I always let people influence how I acted, dictate who I was and let people disrespect me without standing up for myself. I was basically one big human doormat. I've now learnt to place healthy boundaries in my life for what I will and won't accept - not only from others but also from myself! 

While life is unpredictable, you do have a degree of control over what you fill your time with, who you let into your life, the job you do, the dreams you chase. These factors shape your life. I won't allow myself to be in certain situations or surround myself with certain people anymore for the sake of my mental wellbeing and I think that is one of the most powerful realisations and self-reflections anyone can do in their life. If you haven't already, I'd urge everyone to take some time reflect on what boundaries need to be put in their life.

 

This past year has definitely been a year of development and change for us all. It's most definitely not been easy but it's been full of valuable lessons. What have you learnt during this lockdown? I'd love to hear your experiences in the comments!

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  1. Wow, these are all such wonderful lessons to take away from the pandemic! I have definitely learned about setting boundaries too, as well as really seeing how unpredictable life is. I hadn't truly gotten that before this. Thank you for this post!

    Sending light & love your way,

    Diana Maria & Co

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    1. Glad you enjoyed the post! I never understood the extent to how much life can be so unpredictable until now! x

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  2. This is such a wonderful post and contain most valuable reminders that I really agree. Life is more uncertain than ever and I have been spending more time with my mom this pandemic. Thanks for sharing your lessons xx

    lenne | lennezulkiflly.com

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    1. Lovely to hear you have been spending more time with your Mum! xx

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  3. Life is really unpredictable. We don't know when or how this pandemic will end. Let's just live and make the most of what we have now in front of us and not take anything for granted. Thanks for sharing these life lessons. :)

    Have a great day and keep safe!

    xoxo,
    SHAIRA
    www.missdream-girl.blogspot.com

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    1. This has 100% changed my outlook on life! I wont ever take another day for granted again! x

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  4. I think we've all learned a lot over the past 12-14 months. For me, a big lesson was who really cares and who is worth bothering with, going forward. I was very, very ill with Covid and people who I thought would care, didn't even send a text! Life is too short for those sort of people! I also learned that I'm very happy with the simple things x

    Beautylymin

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    1. 1000% I have realised the exact same! I have cut a lot of people out of my life which I think was needed. So sorry to hear you had to go through that! I hope you're feeling much better now :) xx

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  5. Love this! Although lockdown has been awful, I also feel like I've learnt a lot during it too - especially agree with the point about focussing on what is important!

    Molly xx
    https://volumesofbeauty.com

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  6. What a wonderful read! I've also realised that being present matters so much. This may be one of the biggest lessons I learned during our lockdown. That, and realising how lucky I am to have a roof over my head and a home to be in - as so many people have had a rough time and have been unsafe in their homes during this time. :)

    Julia x
    Last Post: Five Ways To Celebrate Spring 🌸🌱

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    1. Definitely! I am so much more thankful for the things I once took for granted! x

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  7. Such great lessons and a good reminder for everyone reading too! xx

    Danielle's Beauty Blog 

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