Throughout my career I have worked in many different environments and some of them have been so far away from another that I had to relearn new skills for each position. To name a few lets go with a shop, spa, cafe, office, gym, outdoors, theatre and pool. You know what none of them are though? Home. And that is a completely different ball game. There are no colleagues and there are so many distractions. Not only is there the internet, books and the tv to watch there are also things like having our dog, getting the washing done or tidying the kitchen. I could even get distracted for two hours taking a midday bath. This is not conducive behaviour for working from home and to actually achieve something by the end of the ‘working day’ I have had to learn to buckle up and concentrate. This has also meant putting new structures in place to make me as productive and focused as possible.
The TV is off during the day. It seems like a pretty straight forward one but it was a little hard to get used to at first. Anytime I have written before I enjoyed putting a film on Netflix and watching it while I worked and I think I just liked the background noise. Now though and going forward I am only flicking the tv on whilst I have breakfast, my lunch or in the evening when my husband leaves the ‘kitchen office’ and retires to the living room.
Choosing my seat (and changing it throughout the day). I also used to work in the kitchen, sat at the table looking out into the garden but I would say there are definitely more distractions in there than my seat in the living room. The fridge for one. Now I have found the place where I work best I do make sure I am still getting up and walking around the house every so often. Movement is so important and I wouldn’t want to find that I had been sitting in the same place/same position for 3-4 hours.
Getting ready in the morning. No, I don’t put make up on every day but it definitely does bring me a little focus on the days where I do need it as well as getting dressed. The mornings the I have spent in my pyjamas are the days where I have ended up doing more housework than business or leaving the tv on for a little longer after breakfast.
Taking the dog a walk first thing. I find getting up, dressed and taking our Labrador Mia on a walk after our first cup of tea really helps us to feel fresh, ready to start the day when we get back and more focused on the tasks ahead. I would say that we have been doing this every other day at the minute and I can definitely tell the difference in the hours after the walk.
I have also been listening to a couple of podcasts that really help with tips on working from home and things we can do to improve productivity and the loneliness that can come with working from home and not seeing colleagues in the office. My main listens would have to be The Co-Working Podcast by Jess Berry and The Busy to Boss by Holly Bray because they cover the aspects of working alone and how to focus productivity when you work for yourself.
If you have any working from home tips let me know or get in touch on Instagram @lorenjessica_
There is so much talk about in the realms of having a niche whether this is on Instagram or within your blogging, video work and I get it. You get known for what you do. This also works with so many other trades. If you want to find an accountant you type it into the search engine, to niche it even more you type in the area where you live. It makes complete sense. But it can also be difficult in finding your niche.
It brings me back to a chat with my family I had a while back. Imagine being that one kid in a hundred that knew exactly what they wanted to be when they grew up. And doing it. And actually enjoying it for their whole career. That notion simply amazes me. It also amazes me that I haven’t met anyone in my life that has done just that.
People, as people do, evolve. They also aren’t just ONE thing. People are a range of things and enjoy multiple aspects of life so it becomes difficult (and where I have especially found it hard) to choose just one of the many things that makes up a varied life.
There are many bloggers that clearly define themselves and their content and have found what they love to speak about. Travel Bloggers are one of these niches. They experience, educate and entertain their audiences with places they have visited and even when they are spending time at home they are writing about places they would love to visit or ‘how to plan a trip to …’ or ‘what to pack on a trip to…’ Similarly, book bloggers. I have seen many where their Instagram pages are full of beautifully full book shelves or inspirational quotes from characters. They know what their interest is and they run with it.
WHY DO I NEED A NICHE?
Too right, why? Why should I feel the need to only write about one or two topics? Why can’t I write about everything that I enjoy? Well I could but it wouldn’t grow in the same way. Why should someone keep returning to see what I have written when they don’t know what to expect? I wouldn’t want to visit a travel company website and find that they’re talking about the latest fashion trend or a type of pet food. You want to know that wherever you are going you know what you’re going for. That way whatever mood you are in or if you want a certain piece of information, boom, you’re in the right place.
It also links to that good old saying ‘jack of all trades and master of none’.
So, How Am I Finding and Narrowing My Niche?
I couldn’t decide what I wanted my niche to be so I made like the true Virgo I am and wrote a list. It went like this;
Renovating our first home
Mia our chocolate labrador
Disney, the brand and holidays
Reading books and reviewing
Fitness, health and wellbeing
High end and luxury clothes, style
Skincare and beauty products
Travelling to beautiful destinations
Visiting places in the UK
Arts and crafts
Spa visits, reviews and skincare brands
That’s a LOT of things to talk about right? It would also be a lot of information to sift through when trying to find the blog post that you want to read and while everyone is out there having aesthetically pleasing Instagram grids mine would be like an explosion in a paint factory (and not in a good way). I’m leaving it there for now but Part 2 will be up soon!