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How to create work-life balance when your new office is home

19 May, 2020

When the world is at crisis and the majority of us are working from home, creating a work-life balance can seem like an impossible feat. Virtual meetings and communication apps makes it all too easy for us to be accessible around the clock. The fears of redundancy and job loss are at an all time high and a trigger to work even longer hours at home than before. Many of us are aware that prolonged stress of the ‘never-ending’ workday is detrimental to our health and wellbeing, and with a pandemic on our hands, the necessity to maintain good health is at an all time high, creating a healthy work-life balance is essential. 

Balance looks different to everyone and every household. Balance is about prioritising the things in your life that bring a sense of purpose and how in control you are about how you feel. 

Use these 6 tips below to help you find your work-life balance during lockdown: 

Create a lockdown schedule (as if you were at work)

Routine and structure will enable you to work more productively and help you feel more in control of your day. By outlining a daily structure whilst working at home you can set boundaries for the start and end of the work day. To help you stick with your schedule always have something planned before and after your work time slot. To become accountable commit to doing something with someone else, for example sign-up to a morning online workout class, arrange a call with a family member over dinner, learn to schedule in your home life activities as you would for your work tasks. 

 Set up work-life boundaries

Create an environment at home so you can ‘walk away’ from the office. This could be as simple as closing the home office door after working hours, if you don’t have an office perhaps consider switching off the lights and lighting some candles instead to help you create a different environment. Also consider when taking work calls – go to your ‘office’ space rather than taking them on your sofa or in your bed! 

Continue to do things you enjoy

You may need to get creative but continue to do as many of the things you would have done before lockdown – but from home. This will add a sense of fun and excitement into your week. If you’re someone that loves a midweek movie, create a movie night in your living room, perhaps it’s a girls catch-up, make it a virtual date and all agree to shower and dress up! 

Choose your 3 wellbeing rituals 

Consider the things you do that create the biggest positive impact to your wellbeing (your physical, mental and emotional self). Chose your top 3, adapt them so you’re able to integrate them into your day- no matter what. 

Practise self-compassion

It’s going to be hard to stay focused, motivated and positive at times, change – in such uncertain times – can be a challenging time for everyone. Accept that somedays you will have to do more work to catch-up or need to take the complete day off to disconnect and re-charge. This is OK, this is normal. Being kind to yourself is going to help you move on a lot quicker than spending time ‘beating yourself up’ or feeling guilty. Have a plan in place for when you do have an ‘off-day’, do you have a friend you can call that always makes you belly laugh? Or a playlist of uplifting songs you can listen too?

Keep perspective 

It’s all to easy to lose perspective during these challenging times, our survival-response is at an all time high and our inner-critic is ready to confirm every negative thought that comes up. It’s important to find what it is that helps you keep perspective on the big picture – staying at home is keeping you and others safe! Experiment with cultivating a positivity mindset, journalling in the evening and write down what has gone well, keep daily gratitude lists, learn breathing techniques and read only quality information on COVID 19. 

Heidi Jones coaches high-flying career women to take action to balance their health, happiness and career goals. Join her New Free Online Healthy Lifestyle & High Flying Career 5 Day Challenge and learn the tools to help you take control of the controllable. Follow @heidi_jones_coaching or visit her website heidijonescoaching.com

Listen to: The Heidi Jones Coaching Podcast

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