There is no denying the sacrifices endured over the last 18 months or so. For some of us, more than others, these have been extraordinary.
While ‘Freedom Day’ and relaxing of restrictions are now a reality, life as we knew it may well have changed indefinitely.
With this in mind, we conducted research to reveal the biggest lifestyle changes that people have made throughout lockdown. Please note that all percentages outlined in this article and infographics refer to the percentage of respondents to our survey of 2007 people. Let’s take a look.
We conducted research into a wide variety of human behaviours, but one that we naturally focused on was the topic of smoking and vaping.
Our study of over two thousand people revealed that during the UK lockdowns in 2020 and 2021, 5% of respondents switched to vaping, with 4% planning to continue with their switch in future.
A further 8% of our survey respondents smoked less with 6% hoping to continue this after the lockdown dust settles.
Interesting enough, but we wanted to dive deeper than this. We wanted to get a real understanding as to why a notable change in smoking and vaping habits came about while being locked down.
For the switch to vaping, our studies showed that the main reasoning behind this was that people felt they had less time to themselves, with more time perhaps spent at home and around family. One of the reasons for smoking less were due to social pressures.
The most common reasons for cutting back on smoking (not including those who switched to vaping), however, were wanting to lower nicotine intake (31%), saving money (21%) and it generally being easier to cut down due to social distancing (16%)
As mentioned before, our study had a natural focus on smoking and vaping habits, but we didn’t stop there. With so many forced alterations to our lives, we wanted to identify if these restrictions had any bearing on our everyday activities and whether Brits have chosen to make any further lifestyle changes.
The results produced some fairly significant results. The most common lifestyle changes made over this time were that 37% of people were eating healthier, 34% were exercising more, a further 34% of people were spending less money, with 33% of people taking the time to cook more.
Our study indicates that a sizeable chunk of the population has altered their lifestyle choices over lockdown. That being said, this naturally brings about worries of what life will be like when things eventually hit ‘normality’ again.
Though many of the heavy restrictions have been lifted, life as we knew it pre COVID still seems far away. This is echoed to a certain extent in our findings.
We found that 42% of respondents said they somewhat or strongly agreed they were worried about adapting back to large social settings. A further 42% were worried about maintaining a good work life balance now restrictions have eased.
A staggering 61% of respondents somewhat or strongly agree that they do not feel ready to go abroad yet, with a further 31% worried their lifestyle has become too different to adjust back to how it was before.
It’s clear to see that the pandemic has had a significant impact on the things we previously may well have taken for granted. A conscious effort has been made by many of us to change our lifestyle choices.
However, we cannot forget the lasting effect this past 18 months will have. Though we have made efforts to adapt to the ‘new normal’, our study shows that continuing the changes we’ve made into a world without lockdowns, could prove difficult.
Have you made changes during the pandemic that you plan on keeping post ‘Freedom Day’? Maybe you have switched from cigarettes to a vape device? Well, we’d love to hear about them. Let us know on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.