Lockdown 2.0: how to cope through the second wave
Six months down, six more to go … at the very least. While the last lockdown came just as the clocks went forward and the days got longer and lighter, this time around we’re heading into the depths of winter.
While Tier 2 isn’t exactly a full-on lockdown, we’ll be facing tougher restrictions for the time being (read: no more dinner parties for the forseeable).
There will be no Tiger King to quell our boredom (although we’re hoping season four of The Crown will bring us some juicy Diana-Camilla drama) and we’ve just about had our boardgame fix for the next decade. However, our Instagram feeds have already started to fill with artsy shots of freshly baked goods once again, so we’re set to see another baking boom.
Being old hands at this whole lockdown thing now, we know the dos (get your hair done while you can) and don’ts (step away from the toilet paper aisle) and can adequately prepare ourselves for a second round.
Not sure what to do first? Read on for our survival guide.
Hone your WFH space
You might already be a pro at working from home by now but as we may be WFH for the long haul, we need to carve out a proper space (and invest in proper chairs to soothe our aching backs). As we head into winter, we want our WFH space to feel as light and bright as possible. Att Pynta’s founder and co-director, Amanda Nelson says an easy trick for this is to decorate your space with plenty of greenery. She adds: “A small green potted plant on your desk or a vase of fragrant fresh flowers will help lift your mood and dress up your space.
“As winter draws nearer, making your work area cosy will make you want to spend time in your WFH space. Adding your favourite scented candle or a little desk lamp with a diffused light is a great way to add a cosy atmosphere to your work station. Making sure your chair is comfortable is not only essential for your posture but also a great way to make your space look better. Add a textured cushion and throw a sheepskin rug over the back of the chair to dress it up.”
Make an appointment with your hairdresser ASAP
Lockdown 1.0 was a tough time for bottle blondes and the men of well-meaning partners, so this time, don’t make the same mistake. Expect to see the return of the hair colour of the past decade: ombre. While we’re on the subject, it’s probably a good time to book in for a wax, if that’s your kind of thing, and bank up those massages and facials now while you can too.
Embrace cuffing season
Let’s face it, 2020 has been a hard year for singletons, but don’t give up hope just yet. “If you went into 2020 thinking, ‘this is the year I’m going to meet someone,’ I can understand that it feels like Covid-19 has thrown a rather large wrecking ball through your best intentions,” London-based dating coach, Hayley Quinn, says. “You may be one swipe away from throwing the towel in. With another lockdown looming, if you’re lacking in motivation to date take a pause from dating.”
If you want to take a break, Quinn recommends discovering a new hobby or fitness routine to keep you distracted. If you’re still committed to finding that special someone, Quinn adds: “Maybe it’s a good time to spring clean that online dating profile, sign up for some virtual speed dating, or finally lay those boundaries down.”
For those who found a summer love, lockdown could mean speeding up relationship milestones. “With recent government policy advising only to date people you’re in an established relationship with, it can be very tempting to try to accelerate the pace of your relationship from casual to committed. Whilst on the bright side it means the ‘what are we?’ conversation is becoming more mandatory than awkward; remember that commitment isn’t a race,” Quinn says.
“Focus on building your relationships slowly and looking at the other person to reciprocate. If you have a genuine and committed potential partner they will make just as much effort as you do to stay in touch.”
Grow your library
If the last lockdown made us all banana bread connoisseurs (and seriously consider signing up for the next Bake Off), then this lockdown we can all expect to become bibliophiles. Reading is back. As most of our days have been spent rolling from one screen to the next, all we want is to pick up a good book to lose ourselves in for a few hours. This year has seen a slew of excellent offerings, from Brit Bennett’s captivating novel, The Vanishing Half, to exciting debuts from Naoise Dolan and Kiley Reid and the most hopeful nonfiction offering of 2020: Human Kind by Rutger Bregman.
Cement your at-home workout routine
If you didn’t join the masses in downloading the Couch to 5K app when lockdown first hit, now could be the time to see if you have the running gene. Not only will running help to keep you fit, but it’s also an excellent excuse to get outdoors and explore London’s beautiful parks. Yet, as the weather gets cooler, you might want to stick to indoor exercise instead.
During the first lockdown, many of London’s best gyms started going live with their workouts on social media, an excellent (and free) way to keep up with the fitterati. Jordan Lue, personal trainer at luxury London-based gym group, Third Space, says: “Assuming you have little to no equipment at home, I would always prioritise a routine that focuses on the whole body with some specific attention to isometric holds. If you are unfamiliar with this term, it represents movements which require static holds in a variety of positions. Think of a wall squat or plank. Isometric holds do a great job of maintaining strength and bone density.”
Support local while you can
With a lockdown looming, we need to support small businesses now more than ever. Whether that’s visiting your local independent book or plant shop, grabbing a pint at the pub on the corner or eating at your favourite local restaurant, these businesses are what keep our communities vibrant and thriving. When the lockdown does arrive, make an effort to see if these businesses are still taking window sales or offering deliveries, a little help can make all the difference.