Living through a pandemic makes the head spin. We’re experiencing high levels of fear for ours, and our loved ones’, health and safety, have a financial anxiety over the economy for ourselves/the community/our company/the world, while also being thrown into a situation where we suddenly have to adapt to completely (for most) new working conditions far away from our office with regular routines and co-workers, to a far less ideal workplace in our home.
While it is completely normal and expected to feel anxious and stressed out, there are ways to ease the mind and remain productive at work.
Set yourself up for an amazing new day on the night prior
Make your morning routine more enjoyable by having a special treat prepared. While we all love different things – and whether you have a passion for cold brew coffee, practicing yoga, or overnight oats – it is worth investing some time in your upcoming day on the night before
Personally, I love to make some fruit and berry infused water which I leave in the fridge overnight – and drink as soon as I get up! I also love to place my slippers close(ish) to the radiator so they’re nice and warm when I stick my feet in after I get out of bed – with each day being pretty much the same, it really is the small things that matter!
Be grateful and set daily intentions
Set your alarm to go off 5 to 15 minutes earlier than usual, and invest that time in finding gratefulness. Remember that I mentioned that the small things matter? That is definitely the case here, too! Perhaps you had an exceptionally good night of sleep, had consistent hot water during your morning shower (most New Yorkers will get why this is a thing), or have an amazing view from your window that you can take time to enjoy. Being grateful and not taking things for granted can help us ease our minds and stay level headed during this extremely challenging time.
After taking some time to be grateful and gain perspective, you can set an intention or a goal for yourself that day. Be kind to yourself here, you don’t need to become fluent in French or invent a Nobel Prize worthy contraption. Instead, your intention can be to check in with five co-workers you don’t talk to daily and see if they’re okay, or to bring at least two new ideas to the table during your next group meeting. Any step, big or small, that helps you progress is really worth celebrating.
Make the “WFH Office” YOUR office
It doesn’t have to be a date night for you to set the mood. Light some scented candles, pull the curtains aside to make the room brighter and open the window and let some fresh air in, play your favorite songs or just some relaxing music (or simply enjoy the quiet space if you’re lucky enough to be in one).
You really set the rules here, and your feet won’t be seen during the video calls, so feel free to wear the bright green or pink, fuzzy socks that make your feet sing with joy, or answer all your emails while laying on top of your bean chair. After all, how many times haven’t you thought to yourself that the office would’ve been so great if it had, or allowed, this or that. Well, now it can, and it should!
It is more important than ever to keep in touch with friends and family, so schedule in lunches, brunches, happy hours etc. every week . Not only is this good for your soul and sanity, it also allows you to keep networking and find new opportunities and great connections.
Looking for some brand new people to connect with? No worries, we have two weekly virtual meetups with some amazing and extraordinary people attending, and you can just message us if you would like to know more about them and how to join!!
Accept the distractions
Distractions are inevitable in these times, and you will experience extreme worry, and stress and encounter situations such as your child considering your newly white painted wall to be a perfect canvas for their next art piece, a spouse that constantly need help finding things, a cat or dog that suddenly requires constant petting, or a neighbor that has decided to use quarantine time to take virtual opera lessons. Neither of these things are within your control. Acceptance and refocusing on the things that you can control will help to get some productivity going for you!
Check in on yourself
Take breaks throughout the day to check in your own wellbeing, and take selfcare breaks when needed. Bring attention to your breath, add an extra cushion to your chair, or just lay down and meditate. Mindfulness check-ins and moments of self care can help to bring you back to the present and focus on your day rather than having your mind wandering into worry.
Please keep in mind
We are all unique so while these suggestions might work for many, it is not something for everyone. However, I truly believe that caring for oneself is imperative to your productivity, not just during a pandemic, but in your everyday life, and now is an opportunity to finally take care of you, and establish those healthy routines for your ongoing wellbeing.