Lockdown life as a twentysomething hospitality worker

Written by Laura Millward, 23.

My working career would be described as mildly chaotic thanks to my desire to work under pressure. As someone who has always focused on working hard to get far in life, stemming from growing up in a small fishing town in Devon, moving to London after graduating was a must. As a fresh graduate, I was extremely lucky to start my career and hit the ground running with a well-known hospitality brand.

Being furloughed almost immediately was a relief

Nine months in and lockdown hit. Covid-19 covered the news globally and nobody had any idea where this would take us or how long it would last. This truly is a global crisis. The hospitality industry was one of the last sectors to enter lockdown, with little news coverage highlighting the devastating economic impact, later finding hundreds of thousands of jobs will be lost. In some respects, this was deservedly so as the country switched its focus toward the selfless efforts of the NHS alongside the dramatic shift to everyone’s lives globally. But then again, information regarding the ‘new normal’ in hospitality could have settled my mind. Afterall, knowledge is power.

Being furloughed almost immediately was a relief. Going to work had become a nerve-wracking affair, sitting on the tube covering my face and rushing to work trying not to bump into people during the usual commuter chaos. Believing I was the only one in this situation was a thought to be forgotten. The news coverage followed with updates of absurd death rates alongside firmer lockdown measures - all of this hinting that going back to work most definitely was not in the near future. There was no light at the end of the tunnel.

I’m eager to return to the ‘new normal’ but to maintain aspects of lockdown life

Lockdown-life whilst being in a relationship and living in a new flat turned out to be a blessing. Reconnecting with loved ones and being able to embrace the small aspects of everyday life was exciting. Walking became something to look forward to in my day (the amazing weather being a godsend), workouts were vital for my brain to relax and, DIY, of all things, became a new skill. Learning to adapt to everything thrown at us was new yet mostly achievable.

My personality shifted and life changed, for the better. As an industry professional at the start of her career, I’m eager to return to the ‘new normal’ but to maintain aspects of lockdown life. As a twentysomething hospitality professional lockdown and the lack of uncertainty generated by filtered news coverage has made us aware of how much we rely on contact with the outside world and how sheltered we really are.

We can begin to see the light at the end of the tunnel

The lesson learnt- keep your eyes open and keep talking. Being aware of our surroundings and learning how to adapt has proven a necessity in these uncertain times. I strongly believe lockdown has shown how powerful the human race can be and how important it is to maintain contact with loved ones. We can begin to see the light at the end of the tunnel.

This contribution was written by Laura Millward, 23.You can read her profile and learn more about the voice behind the contribution, here.