Life in lockdown

As we started the lockdown in South Africa and we were encouraged to work from home, it quickly sunk in that this is all real. ‘WFH’ has challenged us to get out of our comfort zones and required a big mind-shift in how we do things, pushing us to be agile and more productive. It also gave us the opportunity to see another side of our colleagues, more casually dressed, some even in their pyjamas or with beards growing.

Being an extrovert who gets encouragement and support from fellow work colleagues to look at my living room wall, working from home was becoming quite challenging.

Changes in my living space

My current living space does not include a study, so I had to move my dining room table to a corner in my living room in order to cater for WFH. The dining room table is now being used for work meaning I am unable to have a sit-down meal or entertain guests. My dining room is now officially my workstation.

Meals, working in Pajamas, Exercising at home and Long Hours

During the first few months, I often found myself skipping meals and working ridiculously long hours. I pretty much stayed in my pyjamas from the previous night and assumed it was no big deal.

I even tried exercising in the garage though I would often find myself discouraged as there was no support around me. I started adding on a few kgs which led to depression.

Working typically 8 to 9 hours at the office to working 12 to 14 hours a day from home was a huge jump for me. To add to this, I did not take any leave or a lunch hour during the day. Living alone, with no family around, the only go to place was my workstation at home. Weekends would typically be the same. The dedication and resilience shown over the past months has been commendable though this period has increased stress and anxiety levels as we all deal with negative economic and health news.

Looking forward, I am excited to embrace the challenges of a post COVID-19 world, in which ways of working will never be the same again. I believe that change, even under such trying circumstances provides an opportunity to reinvent oneself

Little Joys that kept me going – Giggles from teammates and family video chats.
Patricia Pillay

Patricia is currently working in the Deal Management team at a leading investment bank in South Africa. With more than 15 years of experience, she is the subject matter expert in the field of Development Loans and works passionately and tirelessly to ensure seamless execution in this specialised area. She is passionate about building client relationships and enjoys networking with people in the industry.