Maybe the lockdown isn't so bad? Here are lessons South Africans are taking from it

18 November 2020 - 06:40
90% of respondents said they learnt to cook or bake during the lockdown, while 69% said they want to continue spending more quality time with family.
90% of respondents said they learnt to cook or bake during the lockdown, while 69% said they want to continue spending more quality time with family.
Image: 123RF/Hetmanstock

Eight months into the Covid-19 lockdown, 93% of South Africans say they’ve learnt positive lessons they want to remember when lockdown ends.

This is according to a survey by financial services group Sanlam, which also asked South Africans what lesson they hope the country can hold onto when the lockdown is long over.

The survey revealed 40% of citizens hoped the spirit of togetherness could still unite SA.

The survey was completed by 5,448 people of all ages and from all walks of life.

Among the lessons learned included not taking anything for granted (78%), the importance of saving for a “rainy day” (67%), and the recognition that South Africans are stronger and more resilient than many would think (59%).

The majority of respondents, at 83%, indicated they have picked up new, positive habits during the lockdown, and about 53% said they had successfully broken at least one bad habit during the same period.

The top five lifestyle changes respondents want to hold on to include spending more quality time with family (69%), spending more time in the comfort of their homes (54%), prioritising self-care and time for personal growth and development (54%), getting a better handle on their finances and sticking to a budget (53%), and creating healthy boundaries (53%).

“These results show us just how resilient we are as South Africans. A nation that hasn’t let the challenges and curveballs 2020 has thrown our way get the better of us, but instead let them make us better,” said Sanlam CEO of brand, Sydney Mbhele.

“With these insights fresh in our minds, and as we continue to reflect on our positive experiences and achievements over the last few months, let’s make the most of it by turning our lessons into opportunities for our future.”

Given the baking bread and brewing homemade beer craze that took over during the height of the lockdown, 90% of respondents said they learnt to cook or bake, thanks to the images that flooded social media feeds.

The survey shows 63% of respondents hoped to end the year with new and improved culinary skills, and 30% chose to lean into their creative talents by upskilling themselves in photography, painting, drawing, or writing.

Education was also a standout theme with 18% having completed a course online, and another 9% had learnt a new language or mastered a musical instrument.

See full graph below.

Lockdown lessons.
Lockdown lessons.
Image: Screenshot
Lockdown lessons.
Lockdown lessons.
Image: Screenshot
Lockdown lessons.
Lockdown lessons.
Image: screenshot
Lockdown lessons.
Lockdown lessons.
Image: Screenshot
Lockdown lessons.
Lockdown lessons.
Image: Screenshot

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