5 Things I've Learnt Whilst On Furlough

28 June 2020

Furlough has been a strange ol' time. You're no longer in a routine, with set tasks and obligations, and this modern idea of 'productivity being king' goes totally out of the window. Rather than being paid to work hard during your 40 hour week, the government are paying you to stay at home (in return for your job still being there for you when things open up again.) 

What's more, you didn't choose to be in this position, well I personally didn't at least. It wasn't a case of put your hand up if you fancy some time off, rather, I was told I was being placed onto furlough for the best interests of the company. 

You're not allowed to do any work for your employer whatsoever, so a literal switch is flipped and Dobby is now a free elf. But, it's lockdown and everything is shut, so perhaps not all that free after all. 

My 14 weeks of furlough have now come to an end, so I figured I'd compile a little post reflecting on some of my thoughts and the things I've learnt during this weird old time... 

5 Things I've Learnt Whilst On Furlough. A summary of my experiences on furlough during lockdown in the UK.

5 Things I've Learnt Whilst On Furlough 

01. New normals don't take long to develop

To begin with, it was very strange not having to get up, get ready, commute to work and sit at my desk all day. I really didn't know what to do with myself and wasn't sure how I was going to get used to this new (temporary) reality. 

At work, I'm always putting 100% effort in, working hard, getting stuff done. So, to go from that to being a couch potato was a bit of a shock to the system. That being said, I did spend three years at university, so I'm very much used to a free day or two, and a three-month summer break. 

Getting into this new normal didn't take long at all, and before I knew it, spending my days baking, taking photos and writing blog posts was my new normal. On the flip side, I'm sure going back to work and that normal won't take too much adjustment either, it's just one of those things, eh?

02. Hobbies are important

Besides my blog, I've never really been a massive hobby person. I don't play any instruments, I'm not a member of any clubs or societies, and a sports team is the last place you'll find me. With everything being shut, and meeting up with friends being off-limits, Becca finally discovered a hobby she actually enjoys. 

This lockdown I started doing embroidery and I've actually been really enjoying it. I've written a whole guide to embroidery for beginners so if you also need a hobby, that's a good place to start. Besides my sewing, I've been doing a whole load of baking, and I think the Biscoff Cheesecake I made back in April might still be the best thing I've ever whipped up! 

03. Using your brain is also important

If I didn't have this blog, I'd dread to think where I'd be at having not used my brain for anything somewhat productive for three and a half months. It doesn't sound very long, but I'm just hoping that I haven't forgotten anything too important during this time! 

One thing I have been doing to keep those brain cells ticking is a lot of online training. I've been teaching myself SEO as well as how to use Google Analytics, so if anyone ever has any questions, hit me up.

04. Jealousy is rife 

This one probably doesn't need that much explanation and is also pretty justified. It's maaaad the number of people I've seen getting jealous to the point of spitefulness regarding the furlough scheme. Yes, we're very lucky to have had time off and have jobs to go back to, but again, this wasn't a choice, and we weren't allowed to leave our houses for the majority of it.

05. Life doesn't have to revolve around work 

When work is taken out of the equation, there are soooo many other things to focus on. I think lots of us are guilty of becoming all consumed by our careers during the week that we fail to schedule in anything fun. Moving forwards, I'm going to make a real effort not just to do 'fun' things at the weekends, and make weekdays just as exciting. Who's with me?

Have you been on furlough this lockdown?

5 Things I've Learnt Whilst On Furlough. A summary of my experiences on furlough during lockdown in the UK.

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