The one with the routine

Published 28 March 2020

While trying to keep to his daily routine on lockdown, CODE founder Adam Hyman takes stock on what might change when this is all over 

I’ve lost track of what day it is. It feels like that strange time in between Christmas and New Year where days all blur into one and we lose our routine that we spend so much of our life adhering to – half enjoying not getting dressed, only moving from sofa to fridge and ignoring the fact it’s barely gone midday before we crack into a bottle of crisp white – while the other half of us actually looks forward to getting back into some sort of routine when the festive period is over and it’s time to head back to work.  

As we adapt and get used to living our lives in a very different way for a while, I’ve not only found myself taking a lot of pleasure in the smallest of tasks that I’ve ignored for months – getting my balcony ready for summer, sorting out those untidy cupboards and setting up a proper recycling system at home – I’ve realised just how important a routine is. 

While we have this gorgeous spring sunshine (the irony, right?), I’ve been doing my permitted daily outing to exercise early in the morning when the city is starting to wake and it forces me to still get up and not waste those precious couple of hours in the morning. In the space of four days, I’m already seeing the same people who are also out for a run along the Thames at 7am. From the mother (who everyday has been running in jeans and Vans?) with her young son (properly kitted out), to the athletic chap I always see at the same spot every morning by the Millennium Bridge.  

Once showered, I’ll make some breakfast and then I try to be at my desk at home by 9am followed by our team call at 10am. Despite the lack of emails and completely empty diary I find it somewhat comforting to at least try and keep to a routine – who knows how long this will last and when the first slip will come. As our pace of life changes with lockdown, I wonder if when we’re out the other side of this will we change the way we live from what we’ve learnt over the coming few weeks and months.  

Suddenly possessions seem so less important – so what if we don’t have a new pair of sneaks, what’s wrong with the ones we already have? Do we constantly need to be chasing the next best thing or instead should we take a moment to reflect and enjoy what we already have? How will this affect the restaurant industry and the way we eat? For a long time now we’ve all been talking about eating local produce, respecting the climate and thinking sustainable when it comes to what we want for dinner – suddenly this all becomes a lot more tangible when we see our supermarket shelves bare and the impact it has on supply chains shipping in food from around the world.   

Will our 2 metre bubble transcend into everyday life when we’re free to go back out. Will people want more space – that manic crush to get on the tube when in fact you can wait a couple of minutes for a less busy one. Will people expect for their tables in a restaurant to be that bit further apart than usual. Have you washed your hands?! 

Nobody knows the answer to any of these and we’ll have to wait and see. As we bunker down at home, making sure the wine cellar is stocked and you’re finally able to start that box set or book you’ve wanted to read I hope we can all take the time to take stock. Over the past couple of weeks the hospitality industry has shown what a community of passionate, like-minded people can do at a time of crisis – they unite for the greater cause.  

As the nation stopped at 8pm on Thursday night to applaud the NHS and the amazing work that they have always done and continue to do in this time of crisis, I hope that we’ll come out of this as better, more patient and understanding humans with a calibrated view of what’s important to us all.  

We maybe didn’t all go into this united but perhaps having to put everyday life on pause, we’ll actually all come out of this as a tighter knit community. 

During these times, we’ve put together a list of resources for both businesses and hospitality professionals to help support our members and community

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