Pandemic study: no one knows what day it is & we’re eating too much

Emma Roberts makes a quick trip to the Grocery Store

Is anyone else figuring out that they might have masked-face-blindness? I’m not “great” with remembering the faces of real people I meet in the real world, but I’ve always been pretty good at remembering celebrity faces. But now with celebrities wearing bandanas and masks all the time in photos, I can’t recognize anyone. These photos are of Emma Roberts, who did some grocery shopping in a high-quality face mask. I’m in awe of all the straps and everything, although I wouldn’t be able to wear it because A) I’m cheap, B) it would make me claustrophobic and C) I think my head is probably too big for those straps.

Anyway, my late onset masked-face-blindness is only one of my problems during the lockdown. I also can’t remember what day it is, and I’m eating too much. I know I’m not alone. Apparently, someone did a “study” about all of this:

If you’re forgetting what day it is during this period of self-isolation due to the COVID-19 pandemic, you’re not alone. A new survey of 2,000 Americans found that the average American gets confused about what day it is five times every week. A further 80% said the days are all starting to blur together because of all the time spent indoors.

Conducted by OnePoll on behalf of RXBAR, the results showed that 59% of respondents didn’t even know what day it was when they took the survey. This confusion may be taking a toll on people’s motivation as well — as 65% of those polled said they’re struggling to stay motivated during self-isolation. Nearly three-quarters of respondents said they’ve even given up on “real clothes” during self-isolation, opting for loungewear and sweats instead. But this increased comfort does cause some trouble, as respondents reporting feeling unprepared for a video call for work an average of three times a week because of their attire.

Is food the key to this problem? Over one in three of those surveyed said they’re using snacks as a motivating tool. In fact, 69% of those surveyed said they blew through their snack stockpile quicker than they planned. The top reason behind respondents’ isolation snacking is having a variety of options, closely followed by easy access and boredom. All this snacking is leaving respondents frustrated, however, as 65% said they’re upset that they tend to eat all day during their time in self-isolation. And a further seven in 10 respondents also said they’re craving fresh produce more than ever before.

[From People]

I’ve worked from home for about twelve years, and it’s been slightly amusing to me to see how off-kilter so many people are with working from home. It suits my personality so much, and I find the key is making up my own schedule and sticking to it. I used to go to the gym Monday-Wednesday-Friday in the afternoon at a certain time. When my gym closed for the lockdown, it took me about two weeks to figure out that I was so off-kilter because I needed to replace that gym schedule (and I did replace it with afternoon walks). But all the time at home and all of the takeout options… yeah, I’m eating more. March and early April was the worst of “I don’t know what day it is.”

PS… I hate myself for loving Emma’s trousers.

Emma Roberts makes a quick trip to the Grocery Store

Emma Roberts makes a quick trip to the Grocery Store

Photos courtesy of Backgrid.

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42 Responses to “Pandemic study: no one knows what day it is & we’re eating too much”

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  1. Lilly (with the double-L) says:

    There is a fragility and unreal quality about keeping routines and clear-minded. Early on I was walking about 2 miles a day, but idiots who wouldn’t distance and flooding pathways ruined my favorite spot. Being an essential worker who supervises a large-ish team helps a lot. I can’t let them down and we have a virtual meeting every day and keep it together on goals. Because we’re a helping profession, I think that helps us all keep it together too and being able to check in and get tips. I’m doing pretty well on food as not a crutch, but more activity would be better. I’d love to hear how people keep motivated. I do some popsugar workouts and can do that through youtube on my TV, but, again, motivation. If I were completely without work, I don’t even know. In the middle of all this I’m buying a home. Am I crazy? 🙂 Commenters here (for the most part) keeps me sane too. Thanks.

  2. SJR says:

    I am caregiver and work with medically fragile and disabled people.
    Because of C19, I am with one client only to minimize exposure.
    For years, I start every day by writing the day, date on charts.

    This virus is maddening, worrying, frightening to everyone.
    I am very used to keeping my own schedule but I am totally snacking/eating almost non stop, I think it’s just something to do.

    Be safe everybody!
    Thank goodness the Internet is still working!!

  3. Ash says:

    I thought it was Kristen Wiig in these photos so clearly my mask non-blindness is going well.

  4. ME says:

    Yeah, I’m sorry but it’s the joggers that make me not want to go for walks. Usually this time of year I can do 5 miles a day. Now with people zooming by jogging with their mouths open and spewing God know what germs as they run by, I’m just not about it. No thanks. I’m not over eating either, but that’s because getting groceries isn’t fun. Also wiping every damn bit of food packaging with Lysol gets tedious. I eat a normal amount but try to ration junk food sometimes lol. I’m down to a bit of chocolate but it’s whatever, I’ll be fine.

    • Sunday says:

      Agree 100%. There was a great German video on twitter that illustrated how the 6-ft distancing recommendation is basically only safe if both/all parties are stationary. If they’re walking behind each other going in the same direction, you are literally walking directly into the person in front of you’s fomite cloud, and if they’re running it’s even worse. Add to that the fact that literally nobody in my neighborhood wears a mask outside, AND that new report that says loud talking can keep fomites in the air for at least 8 minutes (I’ve seen other sources say up to 30 minutes before the fomites fall to the ground, where they’re still active and being tracked EVERYWHERE on people’s shoes) and… yea I’m staying inside.

  5. Allz says:

    I was furloughed a couple weeks ago and man does every day blend together. This week I decided to cut out desserts (which are my weakness, I was eating multiple desserts a day lately). It’s really tough not looking forward to that snack, but once I’ve done it for a week or two, I want to try adding a workout in my day to keep me distracted. My 16/8 fasting helps me not overload on food in general.

    Ps I despise Emma Roberts and I wish people would stop giving her abusive self another chance.

  6. KellyRyan says:

    Yes! Soon to be hiking and rid myself of ten extra pounds. Waited due to both weather, a need for a camera and new hiking boots. In my area we carry bear or pepper spray, have whistles, camera and cell. 🙂

  7. Case says:

    Because I’m working from home, I haven’t gotten too confused about what day it is yet. If I did I’d start missing meetings!

    And it’s not the healthiest habit, but I’m very good at watching my diet in times of stress. I think it’s just a way for me to feel in control of something in an unpredictable time. I’ve lost 8 lbs.! I think not eating out helps a lot. I haven’t ordered a single thing other than groceries because I’m just not comfortable with other people preparing my food right now. I used to get breakfast sandwiches, bagels, big iced coffees, etc. almost every morning and would go out to eat probably twice a week. I feel so much healthier now, even if I have evenings where I overindulge in pasta.

    • Nikki* says:

      You have more self control than I do, but I’ve also realized how my previous habit of picking up treats in the morning added to my weight. I also am not comfortable w/takeout now, so I’ve never cooked so often in my life.

  8. Faithmobile says:

    At the beginning of lockdown I got really sick for about 10 days and lost some weight and it’s all back now! My husband and I have been forgoing dinner because after a day of snacking a full dinner is too much. I worked from home and homeschooled my kids before lockdown so the difference is now my husband gets to help. My kids had so many classes and play groups that I was constantly racing from one activity to another and now… I keep missing their zoom meetings because I don’t know what time it is(not the day, the hour). My business is booming, so it feels weird to be the only busy person in house full of sloths.

  9. Peanutbuttr says:

    I have a mask like Emma’s. Cyclers have used it in the past to filter out the smog.

  10. minx says:

    I laughed at the headline because just yesterday I woke up and really had to think what day it was. Saturday? Nope.
    And eating too much, ugh. But I’m trying to be better.

  11. Other Renee says:

    How could anyone identify that as Emma Roberts behind that mask? It could be anyone who vaguely resembles her. I honestly don’t get it.

    I’ve been overeating for sure. I’ve cooked and baked more in the last two months than in the last ten years combined. Haven’t eaten any takeout. I walk about two miles a day which is low for me, and I really miss lifting weights at the gym. I’m afraid to get on the scale. I lost 20 lbs and I’m sure I put it back on. I’m kind of ashamed of myself. I used to do a lot of my computer work at or near Starbucks. It kept me from noshing all the time.

    • Nikki* says:

      Well Other Renee, I hope you won’t be too hard on yourself. It’s very easy to put weight back on even in normal times, so it’s pretty understandable during a pandemic! I’ve been a yo-yo, which isn’t good. My latest ploy is to get a bunch of healthy snack foods at the ready, and drink loads of herb tea, and walk. Best wishes to you, and staying Covid-free is the main thing! <3

  12. Vava says:

    I like her trousers, too!!
    I’ve been retired for 10 years and so I’m used to being home. Husband is still working though (medical field). We would only go out to a restaurant about once a month, so that’s not really a big deal now. The major change is the grocery shopping.
    Glad I am a seamstress, artist, and gardener because my hobbies prevent boredom. Did have to postpone a trip to Utah this month though, but hope to take the “Thelma and Louise Tour” sometime next year.

  13. Nikki* says:

    My husband is eating us out of house and home, and it’s MADDENING. I go to cook something, but he’s already eaten key ingredients. I do all the food shopping, because I don’t trust him to be careful enough, but I’ve taken to hiding food to make it last! I am not making an issue out of it, for BOTH our sakes, but I’m trying to make healthy but tasty recipes now. ps: There’s a wonderful book called “From Junk Food to Joy Food” w/ great tasting healthy substitutes for favorite calorie-laden foods. I’m making faux chocolate ice cream several times a week!

    • Sarah says:

      Oh my goodness this is my problem! My boyfriend just hoovers through everything I buy then complains about the grocery bill.

      • Nikki* says:

        Right?? We’ve been married 39 years, and I keep having to take deep breaths and remind myself what I like about him! When that fails, I think how hard it would be for our adult children and their families to visit 2 homes at holidays, & the fact that we could never afford 2 homes! I actually DO love him, when we’re not forced together 24/7 in a pandemic, and I’m impressed people who aren’t married can make it work!!!!! Best wishes!!

  14. Meghan says:

    I’ve been furloughed since March 17th so I basically only know when Sunday comes so I can file my certification and Tuesday because I get paid. But then Tuesday always feels like a Wednesday or a Thursday and I get all thrown off again.

    I live with my mom, stepdad and my 3 year old son and I do the grocery shopping for our snack happy family. We were flying through the snacks at first but we seem to have slowed down. I love me some popcorn though, I could eat it all day every day.

  15. Sof says:

    I heard a psichologist say that wearing nice clothes is good for our mental health, it doesn’t matter if they are your everyday outfits or some good leisure clothes.
    As for the days, I know what day of the week it is, I struggle with the day of the month and have to check on my phone.
    What worries me is that in my country alcohol consumption has increased 40%!

    • Sarah says:

      Last night I suggested to my friends that we get dressed up for drinks one night, hair and make up and everything (even if we are also in tracksuit bottoms). I’m really looking forward to it!

    • Case says:

      I’m not someone who feels the need to “dress up” to go to my home office (been working from home for three years), but I feel better and more productive if I’m in a cute lounge outfit. If I feel sloppy or mismatched, I feel less focused and motivated during the day.

  16. Sarah says:

    I have always worked from home mixed with office time and business travel and I am LOVING being here so much (as is the cat) but I currently work freelance and my paid work has almost entirely dried up which is bad news financially obviously but I can hold out for a while but not having structured things filling my days has thrown me for a loop. I’m finally getting into a routine of get up, exercise, spend a couple of hours on work stuff (even if it’s not paid) then do something else in the afternoon. Oh and PUT THE SNACKS DOWN. It’s hard.

  17. CidyKitty(CidySmiley) says:

    Time has no meaning and all I do is eat chips.

  18. Also Ali says:

    I’ve worked from home for six years but it’s always been our outside lives that generated the daily calendar. With that piece missing, the week days don’t seem to differentiate from one another.

    We eat but it’s part of our new normal. What did you have for third breakfast is a real question now.

  19. Meg says:

    Im happy to see ive gotten more patience to enjoy paint by numbers and adult coloring books when in the past i couldn’t sit still long enough and wondered what am i going to do with this when done? This isnt going to be good enough to display. I knew the value was the process and encouraging relaxation but for some reason i felt guilty like i should be out doing something and now that i cant leave the house i feel like i have the freedom to enjoy relaxing

  20. Veronica S. says:

    LOL, well you have to figure that’s not surprising. A week is a human construct. It relies on us following social rituals to maintain the construct. One of the most interesting articles I ever read was about a guy who worked with a Pacific Islander culture that had no unit of time measure beyond the day/night cycle, so it highlighted for him how precise and time-driven Western culture was in comparison.

    DEFINITELY yes to eating like crazy, though. It doesn’t help that I’m cooking more in general – and in particular, baking. I’m one of those people who has the opposite problem – I eat more when I’m at home than when I’m traveling/at work. I’ve had to increase my exercise to every day of the week just to make sure I’m not gaining, and it certainly stopped all of my weight loss in its tracks.

  21. bettyrose says:

    I know what day it is, and I am not eating too much! (An excerpt from “Lies I tell myself.”)

  22. Ashley says:

    I don’t remember what day it is. I barely remember the month. So much time passes but nothing gets done. I was applying for jobs like crazy but what’s the point, no one is hiring. And the worst part is that it’s summer and I didn’t even realize it. People were talking about the beach and heat waves and I was like ??? Then I remembered it’s May. I keep thinking it’s March. I hate this. My birthday is in two days and I always get bogged down with “my life is over, I did nothing, I have no more time, I’m so old, I’m single and unmarried, I’ll die a spinster, I have no career, I’ve accomplished nothing, I can’t afford retirement” but now it’s worse because time is really, really going by extra fast.

  23. I have one of those masks, they’re for dust and fire not viruses. She might want to rethink that one.

  24. Bookworm1858 says:

    I thought it was Emily Blunt so I’m not great at faces behind the masks either.

    I’m kind of okay with days (due to my work from home schedule and X meeting is always Tuesday so the day is Tuesday) but I can’t remember if something happened yesterday, a week ago, a month ago; just if it was pre-Covid19 or not.