For many of us, lockdown has been an opportunity for learning... in every way possible! Our usual routines were completely thrown out while we tried to settle into a “new normal” and it meant we had more time on our hands. We’ve picked up new skills and adapted to new ways of working and running a business in a completely new landscape full of previously unseen challenges.
Many of us have been reflecting on what’s important to us, what we miss and enjoy and how we want our new lives to look; taking this new spare time to invest in ourselves, learn new things and focus on some personal realisations. Team Siren has shared what the UK lockdown and impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has taught them personally.
Our CEO, Rachel: “Learning is what got me into this business and what keeps me in it – well that and a large mortgage, teen boys and a hubby out of work. But truly, when you stop learning it’s time to quit, and whilst COVID-19 has presented massive new challenges and hurdles to overcome, the open-mindedness and a willingness to find a way has been the spirit of how we have navigated through.
“Opportunities to learn have presented themselves constantly; new clients, old clients with new challenges (and lots of new logistical problems), and skills… the list goes on. From Learning to work together remotely to learning more about each other to be able to better support our Siren team.
We've also learned who our real supporters are and those to really trust. This has been a massive learning. And sadly, we’ve learned to how to break and receive bad news, how to support each other, our clients and media contacts through this and to accept some things you can’t change."
“I’ve learned that I miss my team, office and the water cooler moments. That communications is the glue that kept us together. I’ve learned I need to eat less, move and meditate more and to make time for family and friends. Most of all I’ve learned that, in all my working years, I have already learnt a lot. Whilst we have not ever had this kind of situation before, I’ve learned to be sure that we will each get through it and be stronger as a result.”
Katie “I’ve learnt the importance of slowing down. I’ve also learnt who our key workers really are and why they all need to be knighted (everyone from the bin men to the NHS who kept going when we all stayed home). Lastly, I’ve learnt that I shall never be someone who bakes banana bread.”
Carla “Lockdown has taught me to appreciate people’s presence more”
Belinda “Gardening has been a skill I’ve developed during lockdown and since moving to a new house. It’s great having the time to water the plants every day. From sunflowers, to geraniums, to lavender, I've cracked it!”
Stacey ”A learning for me has been the importance of human contact – both personally and professionally. Being alone for long periods of time and working in solitary takes its toll. There’s only so much that Facetime calls with friends and family or Zoom meetings and brainstorms with colleagues can achieve. I miss general chit chat, random chuckles and hugs…oh, how we all miss hugs! These are the things we took for granted before, but we’ll all value them so much more once we come back together properly again.
“I also started yoga, the YouTube videos and online studios have been great! It’s something I hadn’t tried before but have been really enjoying and will definitely keep in my weekly routine.”
Annie ”I’ve rediscovered what I love and what makes me happy. When commuting for four hours a day every day, you don’t find the time to do these things and can forget what they are. My family and I have also learnt to appreciate time together and to make more of an effort to ensure we do this. Before COVID-19, the BBQ would only see action a maximum of once a year. In the last few months, our family have gathered, armed with sauces, four times already!
"I’ve also learnt that I don’t like working remotely full-time. I miss conversation without a reason!”
Maddy “Since lockdown, I’ve found a love for baking and made my first-ever apple crumble.”
Tam "During my furlough, it was a unique time whereby no work, no friends or family were there to busy my mind. I learnt that I really enjoy the quiet, and the first time in my life that my body has actually been anxiety and stress free. I also re-picked an old skill with guitar. I am available for any 'happy birthday' sing-a-longs needed."
Sarah "I've made more effort to have nice lunches - good salads etc rather than rely on a diet of beans on toast and I've also been growing my own tomatoes and courgettes ... had a few courgettes but my tomatoes are looking healthy! I learnt to nurtured them from tiny little shoots though to nice big plants."