What Being In Self-Isolation Taught Me | Neeltje’s Thoughts: Life

It’s a Thursday. March 12 to be exact. My colleagues and I just had lunch and got a notification our prime minister will be doing a press conference to talk about what’s going on and some new measures. We all have been following the news very closely and are curious what those new measures will be. This was the moment I was dreading. Not many people were taking it seriously until now but in the back of my mind I knew this would get serious. From that day, we have been in self-isolation. No more fun days out, no more concerts and no more traveling. This got me sad at first but after being in self-isolation for over two months, I have definitely learnt some things, which I thought I would share. Maybe it sounds familiar to you as well…

∿ Working from home

Just like that, when the announcement was made, all my work essentials were dropped of at home. With my previous job I had to work from home sometimes as well and let me tell you, working from home is a whole other thing than working in the office. Why? Because you’re in the same space the entire time. By now, I have gotten used to it. I know not to continue working after hours, have lunch outside and clean up my ‘desk’ (which is actually the dining table) after a work day. This way it feels like I am off work and not constantly in my office.

∿ Evening walks

What to do when you’re doing literally everything at home because of self-isolation? Getting fresh air is so important to keep functioning normally. Especially when you want to escape your home for just a little bit. Evening walks, or just walks in general, are essential for me now. Taking a walk is so nice, it resets your mind. So, when I get back home, I am not in the work mode anymore, which is great. With that said, I am so lucky we have so many places to walk at around my home, also while social distancing. I can even go on walks with one of my friends and still keep the appropriate distance, which is lovely because missing friends (and family of course) is the worst feeling in the world.

∿ Nature appreciation

I have always been a big admirer of nature. I love to walk around the woods. The sound of birds chirping is so relaxing. It’s my favorite thing right now. Besides that, I always find something to photograph in nature. That’s why I’ve been constantly posting nature type photos on my Instagram Stories. Nature is now our biggest escape and I love that. I realize we take nature for granted a lot. So, when all of this is over, you can definitely find me in nature a lot more often.

∿ Getting creative again

Before self-isolation I began to feel like I was a little bit too much in a routine. I like having some type of routine but when I get too comfortable, I get bored very fast and don’t feel like doing anything. This self-isolation period has reminded me that I also have to let my creative side out. The creative things I’ve done are starting a journal and playing around with Photoshop to create new Facebook type posts. This reminded me of when I was younger because that’s when I used to do those things all the time. Love a wakeup call like this because now I know what I was missing, the creativity.

∿ Getting better at texting

One of the ways to stay in contact with my family and friends is through texting. I used to be such a great texter. When somebody would text something, I would respond right away. Those times are over. I read a text, I think about it and that’s where it goes wrong. I THINK I’ve answered the text and go on with what I was doing. Hours later I open my texts and realize I never answered it. So stupid. Luckily my friends are also like this sometimes so they don’t blame me. This time made me realize I have to spend time to actually answer the text and ask my friends every now and then how they are doing. Sometimes we vent to each other, sometimes we just send funny memes. It’s just made me realize it’s important to check in on each other and texting is one of the ways to do that.

∿ Living day by day

Being in self-isolation can get you thinking. Don’t get me wrong, thinking is good but as an over-thinker myself, I know it can also spiral in something negative. In the beginning I was constantly thinking about: ‘But how are we going to do this?’ and ‘What is this going to look like?’. Those are the kind of thoughts that will drive you insane. I don’t want to worry about stupid things and be grateful for the fact that I am healthy, my family is healthy and my friends are healthy. So, I am definitely living just day by day.

As you can tell from this list, I’ve definitely learnt a lot during self-isolation, and we have been in self-isolation for a little over two months. This is such a strange time. Who would have thought that when it turned 2020 it would start off like this? I did see psychic Sylvia Browne actually predicted this would happen in 2020… Anyways, maybe this is the wakeup call we all needed because sometimes we forget how lucky we are and just to be grateful. This is on my list when the self-isolation period is over: hug my grandma, see my friends again (in real life), spend a lot of time at the beach, eat out a lot and hopefully book another holiday since my trip to Valencia got canceled. Are you also in self-isolation? What has self-isolation taught you?





    • Neeltje
      May 7, 2020 / 7:42 am

      Ah, I am so glad to hear! Hopefully we’ll get there too 🙂 Xx

  1. Lisa Autumn
    May 7, 2020 / 12:05 pm

    We’ll get through this girl x Stay safe x

    Lisa | lisaautumn.com

    • Neeltje
      May 7, 2020 / 5:43 pm

      Stay safe! Xx

    • Neeltje
      May 8, 2020 / 3:12 pm

      I know right! Xx

  2. May 7, 2020 / 11:54 pm

    Haha yes, who could have ever predicted something like this would happen? I totally am with you with regards to taking a walk to reset your mind and also to acknowledge nature a bit more. I try to make a habit of taking my camera out a few times a week to go on a photography walk.

    xo Sarah | Oomph London

    • Neeltje
      May 8, 2020 / 3:13 pm

      Ah, I love a good photography walk! X

  3. May 8, 2020 / 10:37 am

    You’ve got really cool photos. I can relate so much as these are the things I’ve been doing for almost 2 months. Instagramming, blogging and taking pictures are what’s keeping me normal these days.


    • Neeltje
      May 8, 2020 / 3:13 pm

      Thank you! A great time to get creative. X

  4. May 11, 2020 / 3:54 pm

    Beautiful post! It’s definitely been a new learning curve to adjust to life right now. Creativity has kept us busy and we’ve enjoyed being out in nature as much as possible


    • Neeltje
      May 12, 2020 / 10:30 pm

      Yes! I love how you said this. Xx

  5. May 12, 2020 / 2:21 am

    It is amazing how, in just a short time, a new routine could be developed that is so different than what we used to live. This time in self-isolation taught me to make time for myself with art, with reading, with just self-progression in general. It’s taught me to cook, and I love cooking now!


    • Neeltje
      May 12, 2020 / 10:31 pm

      Yay, go you! X

  6. May 12, 2020 / 9:18 pm

    Really pretty pictures! I can relate to the ‘getting creative again’ and ‘evening walks’. I can’t finish my day without walking or cycling somewhere!

    • Neeltje
      May 12, 2020 / 10:31 pm

      Thank you! Ah, same here. I just have to get out of the house and clear my head 🙂

  7. May 22, 2020 / 9:03 am

    Lovely pictures! Back to ourselves and listen to what our body tells us it needs. Reflection for all. 🙂

    • Neeltje
      May 22, 2020 / 11:23 am


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