COVID-19 is having a dramatic impact on all of our lives and businesses and many of us will be spending the next few weeks at home practicing social distancing. As someone who has worked from home over the past few years, I've learned a few things about creating work/life balance when the line between the two can be blurry! I'll be sharing some tips and tricks that have been useful for me, and perhaps they can help you adjust to your new regimen and increased time at home.
Angel's Tips for Working from Home
Angel's Tips for Working From Home
Create a Routine
This is particularly useful for those of us not used to working from home everyday. Below are some tricks I've used to create a work routine at home:
- Wake up at the same time and change out of your pajamas. This could just be leggings and a comfortable top! The act of changing your clothes will help put you in the "work" mindset.
- Create a designated space as your "office" (even if it's the kitchen counter) so you associate that space with work.
- Try to stop working at the same time and leave your "office."
- Don't forget to take breaks! We naturally take breaks in the office by chatting with coworkers, grabbing lunch, or exercising. Incorporate these same things while you're home by video conferencing coworkers, drinking your coffee in a separate room, or making sure to schedule time to exercise.
Develop an At-Home Exercise Regimen
When you're stuck in the house and can't go to the gym, it's easy to forget to work out. But, we have to remember to incorporate exercise into our routine for both our physical and mental health! Here are ways to keep moving at home:
- Those of you that follow me on Instagram know I love my Peloton bike. But you don't need a bike to get your cardio in! The key is a simple online search for "On Demand Workouts." Particularly now, you'll find several videos of professionals guiding you through a workout you love - whether it's high-intensity interval training (HIIT), dance, or boxing. An added bonus...many of these resources are FREE!
- Do you live in an apartment? Are you unable to put a lot of pressure on your joints but still wanting to get your cardio in? Specifically look up "low impact cardio." These workouts will get your heart rate up without annoying your downstairs neighbors or irritating your knees.
- One of the the best parts about the gym are the weight options. You can get creative with your weight training with things around the house. Use water bottles to replace light weights or a hamper of clothes for heavier lifting.
- Finally, I cannot talk about exercise without mentioning my newfound love of yoga! Yoga is a great way to stretch and give your body a rest from more intense workouts. But, most importantly, it's time to relax, meditate, and breathe - particularly in these times which can understandably be stressful.
Podcasts & Book Suggestions
Despite COVID-19 inserting so much uncertainty into our daily lives, many of us are trying to make the best of these challenging times by being introspective, building new skills, and/or cultivating old talents. For anyone interested in exploring entrepreneurship (you're never too old to start 😉 !), below are some of my favorite podcasts and books which have also helped me along my journey.
How I Built This, hosted by Guy Raz, dives into the stories of some of the world’s best known companies and the entrepreneurs that built them. Some of my favorite episodes include:
- Carol's Daughter: Lisa Price (June 12, 2017)
- Kate Spade: Kate & Andy Spade (February 6, 2017)
- Rent The Runway: Jenn Hyman (August 7, 2017)
Masters of Scale is hosted by Reid Hoffman, Co-Founder of LinkedIn. During each episode, Reid introduces a theory that explains how successful businesses grew to become iconic, global brands. Some of my favorite episodes include:
As much as I love the convenience of podcasts, I still enjoy reading a good book! I'm currently reading The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference by Malcolm Gladwell. In it, he describes changes in society that define everyday life. This has been really interesting as I think about all the women embracing their silver/gray hair, creating the current silverista movement!
Below are other books that I've found to be extremely helpful and insightful on my entrepreneurial journey (all books are also available as eBooks on Audible):
- What You Do is Who You Are by Ben Horowitz
- The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz
- Never Split the Difference: Negotiating As If Your Life Depended On It by Chris Voss
Before Maison 276 was ever a thought, I was an avid gardener. Playing around in my yard allowed me to be creative while providing relaxing "me" time. Unfortunately, the challenges and demands of growing a company don't leave much free time for gardening!
The recent quarantine has provided a welcome opportunity to rekindle my gardening passion (with the help of home delivery 😊 ). Below are some of my favorite tips to help your yard blossom along with some pics (thanks to my hubby!) of my resurrected garden!
After 4+ years of neglect, the only thing that survived in my garden was this lone aloe vera plant.
TIP #1: Add a little glam to your potters by using decorative stones as an alternative to mulch. These stones are relatively inexpensive, and I found some at my local dollar store.
TIP #2: Gardening is like cooking - the more variety, the better! Let your creative juices flow by combining plants with different colors and textures.
These planters have a combination of Creeping Jenny, Mexican Heather, White Licorice, Begonias, and Cosmos.
TIP #3: To increase the useful life of your tools, remove dirt from them after each gardening session. Then, coat the tools with vegetable oil with a clean cloth to prevent rust.
TIP #4: Gardening can be quite a workout, and you often use muscles in a way that’s completely different from your usual workout routine. To prevent soreness or a tight back the next morning, I’ve found it helpful to do 10-15 minutes of restorative yoga to gently stretch my leg, back and shoulder muscles. Then it’s a hot shower followed by a generous layer of Maison 276 French Lavender Body Butter to relax.
My garden angels are 20+ years old. They've been through 3 hurricanes, countless storms, droughts, and other less than perfect conditions. The beauty is in their resilience.
Stay tuned for more tips and tricks!
Hopefully these ideas and suggestions can help you adjust to working from home.