I first Ubuntu'd on 10.10 Maverick Meerkat, and I was immensely delighted by it. The switch to Unity in the next release shook me, so I switched to Xubuntu for a year or two. After a few years skipped, I returned to Ubuntu 16.04 (Unity) and kept with it for four years. Now on 20.04. The new Gnome 3 environment shook me again, but I'm learning to live with it...
Through these years I have learned to try and not to over-tweak my system; I keep to vanilla things as long as possible. E.g.: getting used to a desktop environment over time and through small adjustments instead of installing additional ones. I think twice before adding additional software sources or PPAs. I rather spend 24 hours to get GRUB going, instead of reaching for a third party repair executable.
Meanwhile, I keep two empty 40GB partitions on the ready, just in case familiarizing myself with other distros becomes necessary.
Some of my past and present activities on Ubuntu were/are writing code for websites, editing my photos, and looking at memes.
If you you use the Gnome 3 desktop and you use a light theme (for which, apparently, neither gnome-shell neither the Yaru theme was properly optimized), here is my essential survival kit:
- I switch the icon theme to
Humanity(it's already preinstalled on e.g. 20.04)
- I brighten the background of the apps/activities overlay
- I brighten the background of the lock screen
Or, an even better hint, in hindsight: don't invest your time into making your Gnome 3 desktop experience usable. Invest your time instead finding out which other desktop you will use, and into installing that.