Adjusting to a new life in and out of work

Nov 02, 2020
Daniel Turley ACA, finance at BioMarin Pharmaceuticals and Chair of the Young Professionals Committee, has seen his life change – for better and worse – since the beginning of the pandemic.

Like many of us, my daily routine was uprooted when lockdown hit back in March. Previously, my day would have included a daily commute, tea break catch-ups with colleagues, and dinner and drinks with friends as the weekend got closer. Pretty quickly, this has been replaced with bad lockdown habits – sleeping in later than I should, binge-watching Netflix and online shopping for clothes that won’t fit me for very long.

My workday has changed completely. I’m a demon before my morning coffee (that hasn’t changed), but I find that my days have more structure – blocked times for Zoom meetings and presentations, blocked time for focus/concentration hours, and even blocked times for informal colleague catch-ups and tea breaks. 

We have had new colleagues onboard since lockdown came into effect and blocking this “informal” time has been vital to help them settle into the work environment and getting to know each other.

Outside of work, I have found other ways to acclimatize to the “new normal”. I’ve made efforts to find creative ways to break up what could be a monotonous day. For one, my house has never been cleaner. A couple of 10-minute cleaning blitzes through the workday have the place gleaming and keep me from staring at my laptop for too long. 

I moved in with my partner so we didn’t have to spend the lockdown apart. We have become very domesticated – cutting out takeaways and improving our cooking skills. Making macarons and homemade pizza were highlights. Took a while to track down the ingredients (who wasn’t a part of the baking craze?), but was worth the effort!

With the stint of good weather in the summer, I got back into jogging and used it as a way to explore areas of Dublin that I hadn’t been to before, like Foxrock and Monkstown. I’ve already mentally moved myself into these areas, although lockdown hasn’t helped me save that much money – yet.

I think, more than anything, I try to make a conscientious effort each day to see the positives in my new setup. I am in a very privileged position. I still have my job and am lucky enough to have the ability to work from home. I can still afford to pay my rent, and I have food. 

I work with the Young Professionals network. For 2020–21, more so than any other year, our network wants to provide an outlet/safe space for those who haven’t been as fortunate during these times. 

We are currently in full swing with event planning for 2020–21 and can’t wait to engage with you all. For us, it has never been more important to connect with our peers, even when socially distanced.