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    "Not Wearing A Bra Unless I Absolutely Have To": 27 Permanent Changes That People Made To Their Lives Once The Pandemic Hit

    "I haven't shaken a hand in years."

    The pandemic isn't over, but we've moved through plenty of different stages of the coronavirus era. Though many people have, through the power of vaccines, achieved a new kind of normal, almost everyone's life has been permanently changed in some way by the presence of COVID-19. So there were plenty of responses when redditor u/Spidey729 posted on r/AskReddit, "What's a habit that you picked up from the pandemic and noticed you've kept?" Here are 27 ways that people have changed their lives in response to...well, you know.

    Note: Some responses have been edited for length and/or clarity. 

    1. "I don't know if you can call it a habit, but I started FaceTiming my family, especially my grandma, on a regular basis. On the plus side, she taught me how to crochet. I mean, man, I'm 21 and I'm able to crochet my own hats now. If someone had told me that before corona, I would've said they are crazy. At least Granny and I share a hobby now."


    Close-up of person crocheting

    2. "It's not a good habit, but I stay in a lot more. I used to go out to eat, go to stores just to walk around and browse, and sometimes just go for a drive. Now I don't do any of that. I haven't been in a restaurant since prepandemic, and I only go to a store if I absolutely have to. The only positive is that I save a ton in gas money and mileage on my vehicle."


    3. "I barely wear makeup anymore. All my makeup expired, and I work from home. I have mascara for dates, but that's about it, and I was a full glam girl every day."


    A makeup palette

    4. "I used to shake people's hands pretty often, and now, because of the pandemic, I haven't shaken a hand in years."


    5. "Eating out at restaurants during nonbusy times. Husband and I are in our 30s and will only eat out for lunch at 11 and dinner at 4. After that, it’s too crowded and germy. Also, my husband still prefers to go out and run errands by himself so we aren’t around crowds too much (we have two kids under 5). He’s faster at it, and we don’t have to deal with the struggle of getting everyone dressed and out of the house nearly as often. We also still mask up during flu/RSV season and if any of us gets a cold."


    6. "I have completely lost the ability to be on time. I can’t do it. My sense of how long it takes me to leave the house is completely gone. Everything is fine, and then out of nowhere I was supposed to leave 10 minutes ago…every time."


    Cartoon animal White Rabbit holding a timepiece

    7. "Buying two jars of instant coffee at the supermarket instead of one. I still have shortages at the back of my mind."


    8. "Not wearing a bra unless I absolutely have to."


    9. "Not necessarily a habit, but I had to do online schooling during COVID, and now, when I register for classes, I actively look for online asynchronous ones because they are a lot easier for me now. I prefer to manage my own time and choose when I do assignments, instead of having to attend physical lectures."


    Woman at a laptop and writing in a notebook

    10. "Washing my hands for a good 30 seconds once I get home. I just don’t feel right if I don’t do it. It's like locking the front door."


    11. "Wearing only pajamas at home. I'll come home after work and shower, and then it's relaxation time."


    12. "I became a serious movie buff from all the movies I had been watching and reading about, and I still have that kinda snobby personality when it comes to cinema. I do apologize for that."


    Scene from Citizen Kane showing a huge poster of Charles Foster Kane

    13. "Keeping my circle small. I prefer to invite people over who have kids in the same classes as my kids. If they’re incubating some virus, we’re probably going to catch it at school anyway."


    14. "I don't touch public door handles with my bare hands anymore. I always use a napkin or the sleeve of my shirt. Same goes for buttons in elevators."


    15. "I wear sweatpants more often than not and almost never wear jeans anymore. I work in a kitchen and wear scrubs; when I'm not at work, I'm usually rocking sweats. It's also nice because the jeans I bought a year and a half ago still look pretty new because they've only been worn a handful of times."


    Person lying on a couch reading

    16. "Flossing. I was always really bad about it, but wearing the masks made me notice my breath and got me to develop a habit."


    17. "Remote pickup for groceries. I can't fucking stand being packed into a store with people, and ever since COVID, absolutely none are open past 11 p.m., when I used to shop."


    18. "Puzzles! I picked up sudoku and started watching Cracking the Cryptic on YouTube, and it was great! I still watch the daily videos and try them myself if I have time."


    A sudoku game

    19. "That it's alright to have a low-key weekend at home and to not be overscheduled. Prior to COVID, we would have two, three, or four events to attend each day of the weekend. Now I'm comfortable saying no to things and taking a weekend for myself."


    20. "I still haven’t been on an airplane since March 14, 2020."


    Two people on an airplane

    21. "I really get anxiety from large crowds now. It's not that I'm worried I'm going to get COVID, it's just that all of a sudden, being in the middle of a large crowd feels incredibly claustrophobic. It didn't before COVID, but now it does."


    22. "The pandemic forced me to stay single and not date after my divorce. Now I'm happily single and can't imagine bringing someone into my life permanently."


    23. "Seeking out quiet places. Ever since lockdown, when shops were closed and everyone was home from work, I crave a quiet street or park where there's little car noise and people noise. Slightly antisocial, but I love it."


    An empty bench surrounded by trees and fallen leaves

    24. "Wearing a face mask in public places is a big one for me. Not just for COVID, but dust and smoke, too."


    25. "Sleeping in. I used to wake up super early and have productive mornings before going about my day. Since the pandemic, I put everything off as much as possible. Snooze is my BFF. Really trying to break this habit."


    A clock radio showing 6:00

    26. "I started referring to my naps as 'meetings,' and now, whenever I want to nap, I just tell everyone I have a Zoom meeting and they shouldn't disturb me."


    27. And finally: "My family has always been a mess. We can’t be together more than 10 minutes without people being agitated or arguing. We’re also separated throughout the country and don’t often get to visit. One of my siblings suggested a weekly Zoom game night when the pandemic hit. It was not seamless, and we all wanted to murder each other for about a year. But we kept doing it, and now we can’t quit, despite how annoying it is sometimes. I’ve gotten to know my family in a way I wasn’t able to before. I basically had no relationship with my brother before the pandemic. We have a relationship now that I never thought would happen."


    What habits did you develop in the early days of the pandemic that you've held on to? And which prepandemic habits have you let go of forever? Tell us about them in the comments!