Over the previous Year That Really Wasn’t, meaning roughly March 2020 through March 2021, if you’re a human being, you probably developed a few habits suited to our unusual “down” time.
For some of us, quarantine lasted nearly the whole year. Others got out and about with major safety precautions initiated, while still others stayed their previous “normal” course, disregarded safety protocols, and returned to regular activities as soon as they opened. But we’re not here to judge.
We’re here to consider some of the habits we adopted – the good, the bad and the ugly – and to ponder which we might keep and which we would do well to eliminate immediately, if not sooner.
Faced with the other-worldliness of the “worldwide panini,” for the most part we stayed at home and got comfortable, creative and innovative. We adapted a number of our habits, some better than others.
When we didn’t have to dress for work every day, we resorted to resort wear, sweats, yoga pants, loose shirts and – raise your hand if this is you: pajamas. Some ambitious souls took it a bit further and distinguished between “day pajamas” and “night pajamas.” Many of us gave up on haircuts, makeup and accessories as well.
The habit of choosing leisurewear for all occasions is one we might want to reconsider as we increasingly come back out to enjoy social activities. It just depends on one’s level of comfort, professionalism, or corporate dress code in some cases.
Now, as we emerge, let’s suggest a glance in the mirror before leaving the house.
The habits of personal hygiene we perfected – washing our hands at every turn, covering our mouth and nose when we cough or sneeze, not crowding others – should probably remain in force. It’s just a good idea to avoid germs as much as possible.
Did your diet change during the past year or so? At our house, we converted from weekly grocery store trips in person to delivery or curbside pickup. While this was a timesaving (if not money-saving) blessing with minimal contact, it wasn’t perfect.
Early in the year, our shopper inadvertently included two containers of ice cream with our order. We stuck them in the freezer, thinking we’d pass them along to a neighbor, as we weren’t in the habit of eating the frozen delight.
But, along with the comfort clothing came the desire for comfort food. I broke the seal on the “moose tracks” and ate all of it within a week. I have since added that item to my “buy it again” list. It’s not a good habit, but a tasty one!
In the early days of 2020, outdoor coffee time or happy hours were instrumental in keeping friends and neighbors in touch, even when we chose not to hug or shake hands. Fresh air is always good, right? This habit will likely remain on our agendas. Having discovered several new parks in our area, we likely won’t restrict ourselves to our yards.
Because we missed out on live arts and music events, many of us turned to streaming movies and old TV shows from online services. Thank goodness for Netflix, right? Though our household was happy to discover old episodes of “Survivor,” I’m grateful that live theatre and music has returned in abundance.
Some habits most likely to be ditched, based on comments from a random sampling of friends, include Zoom meetings, all-day pajamas and pick-up/take-out dinner every single night.
Some likely to remain include outdoor happy hour, ice cream, and creative efforts of all kinds.
What habits will you maintain, and which will you ditch?