Happy Wednesday, lovelies! I hope you are all finding ways to be healthy and safe during this time.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, people are stressing over the coronavirus, which could eventually lead to COVID-19. To take precautionary measures, many have been advised to stay home, schools have been closed for the next few weeks and pretty much all of the fun activities are closed until further notice.
While social media has celebrated “quarantine and chill” this past week, especially during the weekend. They were spending time with their families, catching up on the latest Netflix shows and cooking new meals at home. And then, Monday happened. The people who have to work from home for the next few weeks are not okay. Neither are the parents whose children may be off school for the rest of the school year. Also, the students who are forced to have online classes for the first time are struggling.
As a freelance content creator, I work from home OFTEN. While on a typical week I try to leave the house to be one with the world, being home means I can have my own snacks and work without wearing a bra. Over the past few months, working from home has become easier and easier for me, even though all of my favorite things are here. I believe it’s been because I have several things that I do that allow me to separate my chill time at home versus when I’m in work mode.
1. I get dressed for the day
This doesn’t mean you have to wear something you would wear to the office. Like I said, guys, I literally do not wear a bra while I’m at home lol. But when I get up and continue my morning routine, I instantly feel better and ready to start the day. So whether you’re throwing on some leggings and a shirt or a dress you haven’t worn in years but it’s comfy, getting out of your PJs will help you become more prepared for the day.
2. I meditate/pray/Journal and have quiet time before I work
One of the things that I was practicing even before I decided to freelance full-time was to not go straight into work mode in the morning. I try to avoid having my phone be the first thing I look at in the morning by finding other ways to occupy my time. I make sure to begin my day with water, as well as a meditation or prayer before my day gets started. While I admit I don’t make it every morning, my day feels much more productive when I do. Journaling with intentions of how I want my day to also help me focus on what I need to get done. This can also be done the night before your workday.
3. I listen to calming music without lyrics
I used to be someone who needed to work in complete silence. And although I was getting a lot of work done, I felt even more disconnected from everything after the day was over. To combat feeling as if I’m in self-imposed solitary confinement, I began searching for ways to still have sound around me while I’m working. The most effective outlet for me has been ChilledCow, which is available on YouTube and Apple Music. Chilled Cow has hip-hop and lofi beats that are a complete VIBE! It keeps me calm while I’m working and isn’t distracting when I need to be productive. If you’re like me and watch YouTube from your television screens, using speakers can be even more effective to prevent you from going down a YouTube spiral.
4. I make sure to take a break
During this time, you can’t be too hard on yourselves. We are humans and distractions are very real and trying to work non-stop will leave you burnt out. One thing I noticed when I began working from home is I was still on a 9-5 routine. This meant I would work while I ate lunch and looked up and hours had passed before I left the house. This can be so easy to do, but I had to break that habit because I felt so tired during the day. Whether you give yourself time to watch a television show or you need to walk to pick up your mail, having a break will make you more productive throughout the day. It will also make you feel less stressed out and pressured to get everything done at once.
5. I stay off of my phone as much as possible
Monitoring my phone activity during my work hours has also been something I have found success with. I am someone who looks at the same apps every day and can get sucked into what everyone else is doing. Now, more than ever, I’ve found it to be important to eliminate that activity as much as possible. Everyone is putting their anxiety on full display and, while this is important, it’s not conducive to my own well-being. So, I cut off my apps and begin scrolling during my breaks. Not only has this cut down my screen time immensely, but it’s also helped me to focus on what I need to be doing and not everyone else.
I hope you all are finding ways to be productive and mentally well during this time. I’m also sending love and light to the amazing individuals who don’t have the luxury of being at home and are being constantly exposed to this virus. You are the true superheroes.
Photos by Parisha Janelle Photography