4 Things I Have Changed Now Working From Home

LIFESTYLE, Wellbeing

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_

A New Weekly Routine and How I Stay Productive

LIFESTYLE, Wellbeing

Never before have I worked from home. During my previous self employed years I spent a lot of time at home but then went out to work for a few hours before returning. In the house during ‘downtime’ not a lot got done as I didn’t have a focus and always had the mindset “I’ll do it after work” or “I want to save my energy for work”. Lately this kind of mindset isn’t possible and I need to find the productivity within me to work from home, stay focused and end the day feeling like I have achieved something. I thought I would write more about how my week goes and bring a little structure for me to keep coming back to if it does ever get lost.

The Week Days

On Monday I enjoy a slow Monday morning start and I always have. In two previous jobs I always liked the later starting shift to ease back into the week and get jobs done that we had left over the weekend. Over lockdown I have also been heading to bed around 9pm which means earlier starts in the morning. This definitely helps come Monday morning as I have a couple of hours to tidy around the house and get ready. Although this used to mean rising at 8am and being at work later an early night means I can wake at 6am and still have the same slow start before working between 8am-9am.

I will then work for a few hours in the morning before having a little coffee revival around 11am, maybe with an Italian biscuit or two. I find having something to look forward to, getting up and stretching my legs really helps keeps me focused until that time. If something is really not working for me and I am struggling with the focus I will go and spend time with Mia or go out into the garden before returning to it. 

Sometimes I do feel unproductive. Some days I wake up without focus after having a sleepless night and find it difficult to be creative or put pen to paper as they say. I have found the best way to ‘overcome’ this is to help it before it happens. A night of uninterrupted rest and a fresh, feel good start to each day is the way that I look after the future me and make sure I am set up ready to go in the best possible way. This is also important in what I eat too. I find the science behind gut health and mental health to be very interesting and can say that I have noticed it in my own life, day to day and looking back. In a very trivial sense of it I have always noticed that my stomach tightens and I can’t eat when watching any kind of tense film and in the most basic form of the topic eating healthy is incredibly important for me to be my best creative and productive self for that day and the next. 

I have more recently purchased Chloe Slade’s Vibe and Flow 90 Day Manifestation Journal which I am finding very helpful as I go to start each day by adding tasks to complete and productive aims for being the best version of myself. In the evening I can write how I have felt that day and what I can do to make tomorrow just as successful, if not more so and to do a little evaluation. Having always been interested in journaling I think I prefer having the key points in the 90 Day Manifestation Journal to assess rather than letting my mind wander and not knowing where to start. The journal has also helped me bring the focus back to what I am wanting to manifest, happiness at the end of the day and a good work-life balance. 

My work from home set up and Vibe and Flow 90 Day Manifestation Journal

Into the Weekend

By Friday I am ready for the weekend to start in the afternoon, who isn’t, right? When we get back to ‘normal’ after the current situation my husband will be back at work Monday- Friday which will mean we are likely going to be spending the weekends out walking in Derbyshire or heading out on the motorbike to find a coffee shop. 

Sundays are the time for me to recharge and I like to do this by chatting to family and friends which is great as we all tend to focus on work during the week days. A little self care can also go a long way on a Sunday and I enjoy time for a face mask, reading and a long walk outside. I have found that a little break to reset helps the focus within the week as well as boosting the creativity with change and doing something different. 

From writing this post I have even noticed that there are a couple of common themes. Being out in nature helps me to refocus and relax for a moment and that I do like, and feel most productive, by having a structure. Re-evaluating the day to day can sometimes reveal something that is hard to notice when you’re just getting on with it all of the time.

Do you have any work from home tips or a way that you’ve found you work better? Let me know here in the comments or over on Instagram @lorenjessica_ it would be great to chat!