I used to write a newsletter.
I guess I still do. Just not recently. Last year, post-pandemic, I count seven editions. This year we have a grand total of one.
For a ‘weekly’ publication, that’s not exactly regular.
March 23rd, 2020. We all know and remember that’s when the UK went into lockdown. Since then I’ve been back into the office I think five times? Twice for a shoot, once for a pitch, then twice to see (and in some cases, meet for the first time) my team.
I do not miss the commute. I know I am not alone in this, not by any stretch. The benefits of working from home (higher productivity, deep work) far outweigh those of being in the office every day (commute, open-plan offices) – I can’t ever imagine going back to the old normal ever again.
Being able to close my laptop at 6pm, immediately cuddle my children, start [a proper] dinner, and generally enjoy an evening at home with the family; that holds immense value for me.
But of course, that benefit comes at a cost: the 90-120mins a day of dead time on the train/tube/walk of a commute mind, that’s where I did the thinking. The reading. The mental drafting and percolating of words, thoughts, and provocations that would ultimately wind up in an edition of Five Things on Friday.
And that’s gone now.
Not for good. But it’s telling that having travelled to and from the office twice over the past fortnight, there are words available at the end of these fingers once more.
I know I’m one of the lucky ones.
Throughout all this I’ve kept my job, the roof over my head, and – frankly – my life.
But today, today I’m allowing myself to miss writing.
Because I do.
I am in no rush to return to the office. But when I do (at least part-time) then maybe the words will return with it.