Haven’t You Figured Out Your Quarantine Yet?
This is our 13th week of quarantine. Lucky enough, we’re working from home and have access to diverse services. All of this allow us to safeguard ourselves at home. I know not everyone is in the same situation. If you’re in this latter lot, I’m really sorry. I hope you find a way and work something out. For the rest of us — yes I’m including myself — we have plenty to be grateful for.
At the beginning of the quarantine, I remember my husband jumping from one videoconference to another all day long. They were all adapting to this new phase of remote work. Both his company and his client would require some modifications. It was expected, then, this overload of work.
However, at almost 3 months of this “new normal,” one would dare to think certain things have improved. Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem so. It called my attention how many people I know talks a lot about how tired they are, how they’ve been suffering from insomnia and how they’ve been somehow dissatisfied with work. Being in lockdown is inevitable. I understand the need most have to go out without worries and precautions.
For this reason, I would like to focus in two aspects. First, I know you’re driving yourself insane at home. I also know that your mood might not be the best, specially if you’re alone. And if you have kids, even when you love sharing more time with them, I know they overwhelm you or make work harder sometimes.
Nonetheless, as you’ve probably also figured out, staying at home has advantages, too:
- More instances to share with your family, including meals together.
- The time you spent commuting to work is now yours.
- Less CO2 emissions.
- You can participate in events worldwide as everything is being migrating to a digital format.
- It’s possible that by being apart from everyone you’ve reconnected now with friends you didn’t know about for years.
- Opportunity to take a pause and evaluate.
All in all, in the midst of chaos and uncertainty, there are many things to be blessed and grateful for. Remember and cherish them because you don’t know which you’ll be able to keep afterwards.
Secondly, I would like to provide you with some tips to help you change your speech from “I’m tired and can’t sleep,” to “in spite of everything that’s going on, I am satisfied with my day to day and I feel good.”
Tips to Finally Find a Well-Being Routine During Your Lockdown
I’m not going to tell you to exercise. You know well the benefits, whether you struggle to exercise or not. My husband and I love to train, but it’s been very hard to keep up with the habit. Nevertheless, we can notice the change when you haven’t exercised for a week and then start again. That exhaustion after training leads me straight to bed. I sleep deeper and better. Moreover, all that sweating, releasing toxins, it shows even in my skin. So, maybe it’s not a formal exercise routine, but shake it somehow.
2. Have a Meeting with Yourself
Can you dedicate 5 or 10 minutes to yourself a day? Ask for that space to your family. It can be while you take a shower, too, but only if you do it with intention and without rush. Condition: moment free from telephones, work, and duties.
3. Slow Down Your Car
The Headspace team — as you probably already now, that’s the app I use for meditation — started a podcast call Radio Headspace. You can find it on your favorite podcast app. On one of the entries, they recommended to prepare your mind for moments of focus and relaxation. The idea is not to stop working so that you can say, now, it’s time to rest. It’s sort of notifying your mind that it’s time to slow down, progressively. For example, I set a reminder five minutes before my meditation practice to let myself know I need to start closing the work at hand. Then, I can allow my mind to slowly reach a state of ease. Same thing happens before I go to sleep. Screen time ends at least an hour before and I switch to a book.
If you’re like most, you’re experiencing a bigger load of work now than before. Organize your chaos, then. If you’re a visual person, use notes or post-its so that tasks don’t fall through the cracks. Identify everything you have to do and prioritize. Yes, I know, everything is important. However, I’m sure there’s a more valuable or urgent task in your list.
Many meetings? Save space in your agenda for deep work. This is your moment of focus, no distractions whatsoever. This way you will always have time to progress and contribute in the initiatives where you’re most needed.
Create your routine, your habits, your work methods. But, get serious, really work on that. It’s very overwhelming to start tidying up things when there’s chaos all around. Give small steps. Today, you clear your desk. During the next couple of weeks, you empty your inbox. At this particular time of the day, you check your Whatsapps.
Know yourself — how much time you need to complete certain tasks, in which moment of the day you concentrate better. Protect your agenda and be realistic with your planning. It’s time to consciously respond to life, instead of being carried away by the wave. You can’t live putting off fires all the time — unless you’re a firefighter, of course.
“If you don’t prioritize your life, someone else will” (Greg McKeown).