Balancing Our New (Quarantined) Normal
Updated: Feb 11
Working from home is not new to me, I’ve been doing this for years, BUT having the rest of the family home with me ALL.THE.TIME… has definitely been a balancing act.
Seriously, I finally was having MY DREAM YEAR!!
This is the school year that I’ve been waiting for FOR 18 years! And it’s been Amazing… oldest out of the house, 2nd kid drives herself to school and work, youngest rides bike to school and here’s the best part….NO AFTER SCHOOL ACTIVITIES!
Yep, I had 9am-4pm All To Myself! I finally was able to have true “work hours” without mixing it throughout my taxi hours with kids. I know all you mama’s out there with littles are jealous, but don’t worry, (just like everyone else’s life) it all came to a screeching halt a couple weeks ago!
Now I’m having to figure out how to balance work hours and mom duties, sharing spaces and devices, and creating somewhat of a schedule that works for everyone.
Oh, and did I mention the noise?! Heaven help me, my kids are so loud! And each one has to listen to different music at the same time! What’s up with that?! (My hubby is just as bad with the music)
As I’m working out all the kinks to this New Normal, I wanted to share some things that help me to balance it all while working at home, and hopefully will help you as well.
Keep a Routine
The first week of #socialdistancing felt like summer vacation...No alarm clocks, lots of take-out, binge-watching Netflix, etc. You get the idea. It was kind of a scary time with so many unknowns and we just wanted to distract ourselves.
But now that we’ve got this under our belt for a little bit, I’ve realized how we all need a routine to give our life a sense of stability, purpose and balance. It’s not the same routine we had a few weeks ago, but a routine all the same.
My alarm is back on, which is actually really nice because I can get up a couple hours before everyone else and actually get more work done. Go figure! 😉 I’ve created my new “work hours”, have set meetings in place during those hours so my kids also know what to expect. In my work hours, I like to create a schedule for different tasks to complete (it’s the Planner in me!). This ensures that emails get sent out, phone calls are returned, etc. Time blocking is always a great tool for me to be productive, especially in short amounts of time.
Equally as important…don’t forget to schedule breaks and when work stops! When your office is now only steps away, it’s so easy to now be working ALL THE TIME! Girl, don’t let that happen. Set different alarms for yourself if you need to.
The distraction struggle is real, I know. Creating your work routine will definitely help, but the other inhabitants and the forces in your environment are screaming for your attention too. So be sure your kids also have a routine that keeps them occupied. Ideally, their schedule should separate school time, free time and family time, just as yours does - but you know we’re all just doing the best we can. (And schooling at home? I never signed up for that!)
Do you have a designated work space? Before all these shenanigans, I had my home office all to myself, but now it’s more of a communal area. So to keep the distractions down, sometimes I need to go in my bedroom to record a video or for a conference call, or better yet, send the kids to their rooms. Other times, we need to set a schedule of who is in the office when. We’re really hoping to not have more embarrassing moments of walking behind the webcam during someone else’s zoom call. (Yep, it’s happened. 😳)
Although, 75% of my work is done in my home office, I miss the connections I did have with my customers and team members. I usually traveled to help with trainings and present at events, or even just meeting locally with new customers. So now it’s even more important that I’m reaching out and staying connected with everyone.
The best part is we have so many options...text, phone, video chat, zoom, social media, apps, etc. Make sure to put these connections in your schedule. I have group messages going with different team members who are working towards similar goals. Trello boards for those working on same projects. I schedule one-on-one zoom calls for mentoring and coaching. I’ve been able to go into FB groups and do more Live videos to help my customers. And of course giving my customers different options of reaching me has all been really important to staying connected.
Besides your customers, staying connected with family is equally if not more important. One of our favorites has been Marco Polo. We have two groups going, one for my husband’s family and one for mine. It’s been a great way for everyone to share what they’re up to, how they’re doing during this time, and for us to not all go insane!
Whatever you do, just make sure you’re staying connected with all of your tribes!
I know, this can be a hard one. Especially now that we’ve all stocked up on food from Costco (hopefully its food and not just TP). And the gyms are all closed! Plus we’ll just lose the weight anyway from all the stress, right? 🤣
But taking care of our health is always important, especially when we’re trying to balance our new life. Some things I’m doing is trying not to snack and just eating meals. The good thing about having to stay home is I’m cooking more often and trying to cook healthy.
Exercise! No matter where you live and what your restrictions are, you can still exercise at home. If you don’t know what to do, there’s so many apps or youtube videos with great workouts for you. My gym is even offering free online workouts while they’re closed. If you’re able to get outside DO IT! Sunshine is so good for your soul. Get those Vitamin Ds and go for a walk or just sit on your patio and feel those rays.
And of course I always recommend grabbing your essential oils to keep your body and mind healthy. Right now I’m diffusing blends of Cinnamon, Clove & Rosemary to keep my immune system in check. But I also love using Peppermint & Wild orange in my hands and taking a deep breath to keep me energized and focused
Whatever your New Normal of working at home is, remember it’s totally doable! Figure out your new schedule, keep it balanced and stay healthy!
You’ve got this girl!
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