LOCKDOWN: 11 LIFE LESSONS’ REMINDER

Lockdown

Lockdown: who would imagine that this scale of happening can take place. By the end of March 2020, more than 100 countries had instituted either a full or partial lockdown, impacting billions of people. Additionally, many others had recommended limited movement of all or some of their citizens.

All of this has been happening on the global scale. And behind worldwide and country numbers, there are unlimited stories. Life stories. Like yours or mine. Nearly everyone was affected: our life, way of thinking and perceiving the world have changed. I am sure that many of us have learnt and grown a lot. Apart from all the challenges and obstacles we encountered, we got a lot of life lessons’ reminders.

MY LOCKDOWN

‘Lockdown /ˈlɒkdaʊn/ a state of isolation or restricted access instituted as a security measure.’

I am sure that by now we are all super familiar with this definition. We also know well what is isolation, quarantine or social distancing. Where you also part of the lockdown? Or did you decide for self-isolation?

I spent my lockdown in India. On 9th March evening we learnt about schools closure as the first Covid case was confirmed in Bangalore. A day before, Women’s Day, we were out for a family gathering. That was our last common outing. From 9th March evening together with my two daughters we opted for self-isolation. Less than two weeks later a public curfew took place, first curfew for me in my entire life. Two days later a nationwide lockdown started, the biggest one in the world, limiting movement of 1.3 billion population in the country. Its 4 phases lasted over 2 months, ending on 31st May 2020.

Lockdown Self Isolation
AAKRITI GARG

For me it was a self-isolation time. A total of 80 days. In between I went once twice: once to to buy milk and once to buy few grocery items with My Better Half. Or the time flew or I was very determined inside myself to resist my own decision for self-quarantine. For sure, it was a life experience. Life experience full of life lessons.

Still, Our Little One marked even better result: 88 days at home. We are blessed to have a big terrace with a renovated garden at home!

SOME POTENTIAL RISKS

Yes, lockdowns, isolation, quarantines or social distancing isn’t easy. Maybe some would even call it as ‘lockup’, other than lockdown! ? It is a difficult period, with ad hoc challenges and obstacles that many of us would not even imagine before. I guess that no one is fully prepared for it, especially if it happens first time. I am sure that many sailors or mountaineers are more used to the idea, if even to some extend not positively addicted to it.

Keeping aside potential medical or psychological potential risks as I do not want to interfere into health zone too much. What are some other risks that one can encounter during limited movement or isolation?

  • 24 hours with family around or family too far to be found
  • Extra kilos as home food is the best and movement is less or body shrinking as cooking is still more like stress
  • Messy home as everyone is in the house or getting crazy with extensive cleaning together with spouse
  • At home not only homework but now also school or never-ending working from home rule
  • Less money in the pocket for holiday when it’s warm or savings done but travel anyway isn’t the norm

This list could go on and on… So let’s flip the coin now! Glass is never half empty. It is always full: half water and half air. Being more positive is helpful for all now, also for me.

I’ve begun to realize that you can listen to silence and learn from it.

It has a quality and a dimension all its own.

MY LOCKDOWN LESSONS

# 1: “HOME IS THE NICEST WORD THERE IS”

Home, I learnt that home is our real shelter, and it isn’t only about the ‘4 walls’. It is about our closest family, our daily support and care. It is the ambiance and environment that we create that help us also in difficult life situations. Remember homecation post?

# 2: “During lock down, we are surely locked but not down. Stay inspired.”

This is true. Maybe we shouldn’t have called it a lockdown? We were locked. And especially in moments like this, for me, it is important to search for positivism and inspiration. With many potential risks, it is essential to look at life up, not down. For me, this blog, was the biggest ‘adventure’ during past months. And what have you done to stay inspired?

# 3: “THINGS COULD ALWAYS BE BETTER, BUT THINGS COULD ALWAYS BE WORSE”

Ask My Better Half if I had any crisis evenings in the last 3 months, or… better don’t ask ? Living across two countries and continents, being here with my family but having my parents and sister in two other countries, it isn’t always easy. What helped me most… speak to My Better Half. Do ‘complaining evenings’ from time to time, it helps to be a bit more smiling next morning.

# 4: “BETTER TO BE BUSY THAN TO BE BUSY WORRYING”

No matter what is happening in our life: keep yourself a bit busy so any worries or too many thoughts can be kept aside for a bit. I am sure that most of us were all into numbers and news at some point. Being aware was important for me, but being unnecessarily overwhelmed by information didn’t help really.

# 5: “IF YOU’RE GOING THROUGH HELL, KEEP GOING”

It hasn’t been colorful. Or maybe colors are different. Important is, no matter the impact of the lockdown on you and your family, health, life situation or simply daily habits – keep going. It is all a matter of time. I know that inside me missing is immense. However, I am also aware that a bit more time is needed. Paradise is just ahead!

# 6: “THE ‘IMPOSSIBLE’ ONLY TAKES A LITTLE LONGER TO ACHIEVE”

Would someone before imagine a global business continuity plan (my beloved BCP topic at work) fully in action? And working! Last months have proven it – what seemed often impossible, can be possible. It just takes a bit more energy, will and positive mindset. Forget IMPOSSIBLE, remember now on I’M POSSIBLE.

# 7: “PUSH YOURSELF, BECAUSE NO ONE ELSE IS GOING TO DO IT FOR YOU”

During lockdown life changes ‘a bit’. Less movement as suddenly walks are less, fancy gym can’t be reached. On the other hand fridge seems to be always too close. And no traffic so sleeping is potentially more too. Yes, it all requires plenty of self-motivation to push self each day. Even when sleeping 4-5 hours I kept on living my day as normal = active mode on, day naps are not for me anyway!

# 8: “DO IT NOW. SOMETIMES ‘LATER’ BECOMES ‘NEVER'”

Important lesson for me: let’s avoid using lockdown or current situation condition as an excuse: not to do things, to do them later. It is so easy to delay things or say it is too difficult currently to do them. Or maybe it is opposite, maybe you would just feel internally double proud to do something now? And not tomorrow or day after.

# 9: “GREAT THINGS NEVER COME FROM COMFORT ZONES”

It is all about growth (remember my latest post?). And no matter if this is your self-growth, growth of your children or maybe your community. It can be a steady but slow progress or maybe more rapid learning. Essential is: don’t be afraid to jump out of the comfort zone. You can’t imagine how many technical difficulties I had setting up this blog ? still, I made it!

# 10: “THE COMEBACK IS ALWAYS STRONGER THAN THE SETBACK”

Don’t sit back and wait. There are low chances that a major miracle will take place ? I always used to say at work: be in the 6th gear mode, be ahead of the game. And even if there is a challenge and we need to restart, it is fine too. Comebacks enrich us with new experience. They are true life lessons.

# 11: “LIFE ALWAYS OFFERS YOU A SECOND CHANCE, IT’S CALLED TOMORROW”

Close the past cycle. It is the time for the new beginning! You will smile more soon. We will smile more soon!

Lockdown Tomorrow
AAKRITI GARG

IT IS NOT THE END, IT IS JUST A BEGINNING…

It is just a beginning, a new chapter has just began. We are empowered to shape it the way we want now; for us, for our beloved ones, and in all this not forgetting the nature that is around us. I often talk to myself, especially in more challenging moments of my life like this one. And no matter how difficult it might get – I always repeat myself it is a life experience.

I don’t know where I’m going, but I’m on my way.

Carl Sandburg

If it is a lockdown and I can’t travel to meet my parents or visit my hometown, I know it is temporary. And I already smile thinking that one day we will be telling this to Our Little One as the life memory, what has happened in the world when she was just 7-8 months old. We have learnt so much from being locked. Now when unlocked – let’s shine again, in better way!

I would love to thank Aakriti Garg for sharing with me her beautiful drawings for this blog post. Aakriti is a very talented artist!

You can follow her on Instagram or Twitter.

Moments that matter, no matter the lock.

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