Degree of freedom of life is 56.8 points in March 2021
Rebounds after falling for months. Anxiety and activity restriction also ease
Hakuhodo Institute of Life and Living, a think tank of Hakuhodo Inc., in March 2021 conducted its twelfth “Survey of Sei-katsu-sha Concerning COVID-19” to understand sei-katsu-sha’s attitudes and behaviors during the coronavirus. The survey was conducted March 4–8, 2021 in the Greater Tokyo (Tokyo, Kanagawa, Chiba, Saitama and Ibaraki Prefectures), Greater Nagoya (Aichi, Mie and Gifu Prefectures) and Hanshin (Osaka, Kyoto, Hyogo and Nara Prefectures) areas, targeting 1,500 males and females aged 20–69. See p.14 for the survey outline.
On February 8, Japan’s state of emergency was extended until March 7 for 10 prefectures, excluding Tochigi. This was followed by the coronavirus special measures law revision that introduced fines for noncompliance coming into effect on February 13, and the first COVID-19 vaccinations beginning on February 17. Meanwhile, infections started to decline and, on March 1, the state of emergency was lifted early in six of the 10 prefectures. However, the state of emergency was extended an additional two weeks in the remaining four prefectures, all in Greater Tokyo, where infections did not go as low as hoped by late February. It is against this background that the survey was conducted this time.
When we asked sei-katsu-sha to rate their freedom of life under current circumstances if their normal life prior to the spread of COVID-19 rated 100 points, the result was 56.8 points, up 1.9 points since February. This ended three consecutive months of falling scores.
In items related to Degree of anxiety as a result of the spread of COVID-19, scores dropped across the board, including Feel anxious about the lack and uncertainty of information (62.2%, down 7.7 points) and Feel anxious about the government’s response (74.9%, down 6.5 points). Scores for Degree of activity restriction items, which had risen for three months in a row, also dropped across the board. The drop in Refrain from eating out (76.7%, down 5.7 points), was most noticeable, followed by Refrain from meeting friends and socializing (81.3% down 4.1 points) and Refrain from travel and leisure activities (86.5%, down 4.0 points).
In Degree of behavioral change, scores for items related to behaviors at home dropped, including Refrain from going out and enjoy pastimes I can do at home (69.9%, down 5.4 points) and I’m at home more, so I cook myself as much as possible (56.9%, down 3.8 points). At the same time, items related to outdoor behaviors increased, including I exercise outside where people don’t gather (44.5%, up 4.8 points) and Enjoy leisure activities outdoors where people don’t gather (43.4%, up 4.0 points).
It appears that sei-katsu-sha’s attitudes and behaviors are once again starting to return to outside after shifting from outside to inside from November last year.
This survey will be conducted regularly for the time being (The survey content may be changed depending on changes in circumstances).