We are all having to adapt quickly now as our lives have changed at an alarming rate in recent weeks. As a society, many of us are now home-based, either working our jobs remotely or making changes to the way we run our businesses.
It’s natural to feel anxious right now, but what always helps is taking some positive action – it makes us feel more in control and helps us to stay focused and productive. Some people adapt to working from home more easily than others, where there are other responsibilities and demands on our time; the needs of our children, domestic responsibilities, and other relationships to maintain. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed as we are pulled in so many directions, without the normal routines of our day to day lives.
Getting organised and developing a schedule as much as you are able will help you to feel in control and be more clear-headed. Try to develop a routine with scheduled work time, breaks and family time. If your children are old enough make sure they understand and buy in to the importance of this. It makes everyone feel more secure and you will be surprised at how quickly everyone adapts.
Whether you are working your business around your existing job or around the family who are now all at home, all of these apply.
Make time for you.
Setting the tone for the day by getting up even half an hour earlier will allow you to start the day feeling calm. Resist the temptation to check your social media on waking and instead try journaling or meditation, read something inspirational or do some simple stretching/yoga postures. Our mindset is so important – you either run the day or the day runs you. Hal Elrod’s book ‘The Miracle Morning’ is an excellent read on this subject. Inspire radio have some interesting content, including a meditation hour at the end of every day.
- Get online. We are all becoming more digital and the current situation is only going to accelerate this. It’s probably fair to say that we will not return to old ways of working once social distancing ends. Now is the time to embrace change and it’s a good opportunity to either learn new digital skills or enhance the ones you do have. You could try:
- Getting comfortable conferencing platforms, I use zoom, and was recently introduced to a networking platform called Remo, well worth a look.
- Work in bursts of time. Focus on your most important activity for an hour and a half without distractions or interruptions. Switch off notifications on your phone or email alerts on your laptop. Increasingly it’s being shown that this level of interruption affects the quality of the work we are producing. Take a proper lunch break away from your laptop or desk, then for the remainder of your day work in blocks of an hour. Remember to take ten-minute breaks between tasks, being sure to move around and stay hydrated. Do some trainings, these would be my recomendations.
- Learning how to use your social media platforms more effectively, do some trainings,
- A good deed a day. We are social creatures and we need to feel a sense of belonging and contribution for our mental health. What can you do to help someone else? Try to do one kind deed every day. It could be making a phone call to someone you know who is on their own or offering to get the shopping for a vulnerable neighbour. Perhaps you haven’t spoken to some of your Forever customers in a while – why not make it a point to call them just to see how they are doing and if you can offer them some support? We are all in this together and some older people will have been isolating for weeks and may not have had a call or conversation with anyone.
- Focus on your goals. Perhaps it’s time to review your business goals? Do they still resonate, or have they changed? Have an honest appraisal and perhaps talk to someone you respect and trust. Re-evaluate your ‘why’ and move the goal posts if you need to reprioritise. If your goals still hold, re-affirm and re-commit to them
- Make exercise a priority. With gyms closed for the foreseeable future and people taking fewer steps during the day, we’re all at risk of becoming sedentary. Our playlist of at-home workout videos should help to keep you going. Go onto you tube Joe Wicks has a variety for every age group.
- Start something new. This is a great opportunity to up-skill yourself. Perhaps you could try learning a language or developing a craft or skill you’ve always wanted to try. There are great podcasts, videos and books online that you can utilise to learn these skills. Perhaps you have been meaning to catch up on some webinars – now is the ideal time. Perhaps you always wanted to start your own “Side hustle” there has never been a better time to start. Audrey Paterson
- Build your communities. It’s time to really work on building those online communities. We all need more close bonds to get us through limited socialisation in real life, so get online and start conversations. Ask others what recipes they’re managing to create if they have limited cupboard supplies. Prompt them to reveal their at-home work setup. Find out how they’re entertaining the kids during the time off. Building your own small communities some amazing friendships start online and when we are out of lockdown it will be amazing to put a face to the name.
Relax and unwind.
Try to get off your technology at least an hour before you go to bed to allow you to properly unwind from your day and sleep better. Aim for at least 7 hours sleep – if you can establish a regular sleep pattern and bedtime routine this will help keep you focused for the day ahead. Have a bath light some candles, read a book, or do some meditation.
I will be writing more of these kinds of posts in the coming weeks and I would love to hear from you about your own tips for home working and staying happy, healthy and upbeat. I have also attached a survey and would like to know what you would like to hear more of.