Covid-19 Stories – Interview: Paul Nearchou

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Food
Cooking during corona

Covid-19 Stories

Tell us about yourself?

Hi, my name is Paul Nearchou. I have been based in the UK since initially coming over to study. I’m in Real Estate private equity, which involves investing across real estate asset-classes (office, hotel, retail, healthcare etc.) all across Europe.

How did the news of the first Cyprus measures find you?

Over-whelming; my work is in the UK and family back home. I had to decide between staying here or going back, I chose the former initially as I didn’t want to risk spreading the virus back home. While the measures seemed to be too strict at first, on reflection I do understand the rationale and agree with the approach to protect the Cypriot population especially if you consider our healthcare infrastructure. 

Also worth mentioning during this time I had cold-like symptoms (headache, muscle-pain, nasal congestion followed by loss of taste and smell) and recently got diagnosed as Covid through a swab and an immunity test. That goes to show how important the strict measures are, as I was convinced it was just a cold at first.

That goes to show how important the strict measures are, as I was convinced it was just a cold at first.

What actions did you decide to take?

I decided to stay here (UK).

It took us some time to react at work, but now have been working from home for over 2 weeks. Given my job involves a lot of travel both within the UK and across Europe, on a flight at least once a week, it meant that naturally the new-business slowed down.

window london

What are you doing now?

Working from home (WFH). I used to always look forward to those WFH days, although that novelty has worn off quite quickly. I am trying to get accustomed to this new mode of life, which is still a bit of a shock to the system especially for someone who had a pretty rigorous daily routine: 7am Crossfit, 8am commute to work, 9am first meeting, finish about 7pm, 8pm dinner event etc.

How do you keep your mind busy?

To be honest its’ been kept busy by Covid – it’s everywhere: news, work-calls, whatsapp chats. That said, trying to understand and react to its impact on our investments at work has been an interesting learning curve. It is pretty unprecedented to see a demand / supply shock affect the markets in this way.

Do you do some form of exercise?

My job is pretty full-on; so it feels like all work now since my local crossfit gym shut. That said, I am trying to find the motivation to get on 1-2 outdoor runs a week as we’re still allowed here and join various forms of online classes; crossfit or others. Have done OK, but not near enough what I would normally do pre-Covid.

Londonl Park

Let us know your favourite book?

Tough question. I am reading Super Pumped at the moment, which is the book about the rise of Uber. Definitely recommend that, haven’t been able to put it down since I started yesterday! Others I would consider reading: The Everything Store, Shoe Dog, Losing My Virginity (R Branson), Ali Baba, Outliers & Thinking Fast and Slow.

Super Pumped:The Battle for Uber

Tell us something positive you have got out of this entire situation?

Much more time with my girlfriend and sister. Although one can argue that is both a positive and negative…Also, more time at home has meant more time to do all those niggly DIY things I should have done but never got round to (or wanted to do in the first place).  And to the amazement of my girlfriend I have started baking on the weekends, and not doing too bad of a job!

 to the amazement of my girlfriend I have started baking on the weekends, and not doing too bad of a job!

Food

What have you missed the most?

Believe it or not, despite finding travel tiring through work, I now miss it especially socially – I was supposed to be in Dubai last week (cancelled) and at a wedding in Jordan towards the end of month (also cancelled)…Let’s see how long this is going to last.

What have you appreciated more?

Life! We stress about the most un-important things a lot of the time. So times like this put life into perspective. Always make the most out of your situation, always look forward, always appreciate your loved ones and don’t take things for granted.

What will your prioritize when all of this is over?

Catching with people in person (nothing beats it!) and jumping on a flight back to Cyprus to see family and friends.

Catching with people in person and jumping on a flight back to Cyprus to see family and friends.

You can connect or follow Paul on LinkedIn and Instagram

Tell us your positive stories, contact us at corona@ubvia.com

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