Three ways people are eager to return to life as normal after lockdown

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As COVID-19 measures continue to ease across the UK, many are looking forward to life returning to something resembling normality. Although things won’t be exactly the same as they used to be, with social distancing and mandatory wearing of masks, people are excited to make up for lost time. According to early statistics, here are three of the most significant life decisions people are making post-lockdown.

1. Getting engaged

After months indoors together, many couples are deciding it’s time to get engaged. This seems to have come as the result of spending more time than usual with one another, and learning more about each other throughout lockdown. A staggering 76% of cohabiting couples polled by Fenton said they’d grown closer during this period, but only 12% said they would have been happy to get engaged in lockdown. But with these measures being rolled back, now seems to be the perfect time to pop the question. 

Jewellers across the nation are reopening, albeit by appointment only in many cases. As couples begin looking for an engagement ring, Fenton also discovered that 90% of couples wanting to purchase one will be more inclined to seek out non-traditional styles. This comes as the result of having had time to reflect about what exactly they like, with bespoke engagement rings becoming a hot favourite. Jewellers Taylor & Hart note that bespoke ring styles involve “many different design elements…which is why designing a bespoke ring is a great option for those who want something one of a kind” — and in these unprecedented times, a unique ring would be more than fitting.

2. Going to the gym

The importance of health and wellbeing has been pushed to the forefront during the COVID-19 pandemic. More than 50% of Brits took up a new form of exercise during lockdown according to Nuffield Health, with many vowing to continue with their new regimes. But while people have continued working out at home using YouTube videos, or walking or running in local parks, avid gym-goers know the experience isn’t the same. 

It’s no wonder people are eager to return. As UKactive CEO Huw Edwards notes: “People are missing the gym because it plays such an important role in their lives, helping them to stay mentally and physically healthy in a way that they choose.” And for such a communal space, people need not be scared of returning either, with new measures like one-way systems, increased spacing between equipment and more hand sanitizing stations now in place to keep everyone safe.

3. Moving house

After being stuck indoors for months, many of us are reconsidering the relationship we have with our living spaces. People have realised the negative impact that a lack of indoor and outdoor space can have, with nearly a third of Brits struggling with mental and physical health problems as a result of this. The pandemic has also forced employees across all sectors to work from home more often, making a comfortable work area more essential than ever before. 

For many, this has sparked a need to move house as soon as possible. Priorities have changed with more people actively seeking a more practical space to work from, rather than their bedroom or sofa. Interestingly, 40% of people who were considering a house move before lockdown are now more inclined to choose a countryside location instead of a cramped city flat, not only due to a lack of space but also for lower property prices.

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