Working/having a career means different things to different people. At fleeting moments you find joy, career ambitions and ego won’t matter. You have to work to build the moral and spiritual achievements too. No one says you can’t have both, whatever the goal is, don’t sacrifice yourself at the feet of money. There are too many joyful things in life, but the rat race never ends till you die or make it end.
Because 2021 is THAT year, we will be bettering our work life balance, and these days it’s as messy as the pandemic has made it. Let’s tackle work from home and how we can do that effectively.
HAVE A DESIGNATED SPOT
It may not be possible for you to have a separate home office, but the idea of “office” is overrated this 2020. In your place of employment, you generally don’t have a full room to yourself do you? You mostly have a cubicle. Your own one desk and chair, and in some cases you share a table with or without a divide between you and someone else. You have to plug your ears to focus and you step into some sort of conference room to make official calls. Why not create a table and chair space in your home too?
We won’t have what we want if we only think we can’t have what we want, and I’m not trying to wax lyrical here. If you really want it, you’ll find something in your budget. Cherish it, make that your work office. Put aesthetics it to give you motivation and happiness through the day; hang a picture or painting over it, put a plant, a framed quote you like.
ONLY WORK AT THE OFFICE
No, do not move from it to your couch whenever you feel like. From 8-5 when you resume work, your bed ceases to exist. Your couch is made of lava. You will only be in the office, your “home office” for those hours. Don’t be lazy, Don’t take naps. You owe yourself the discipline and work integrity.
And guess what? It saves you from unnecessary overtime when you put in the hours you’re supposed to, and you can close when you have to. And even when it doesn’t, with a serious work ethic, you feel good about your discipline. Where the job doesn’t deserve extra hours, don’t forget it is not your father’s company. You’re a hamster in the wheel of capitalism and none of your employers genuinely care about you enough to pay your actual overtime dues: health insurance, benefits, etc.
When you’re bored, stretch, take a walk, make a cup of tea, catch up on news, and definitely limit your social media use during work.
GET READY FOR THE DAY
Some days I feel there’s no time to doll up before I start work, I just dive right in. Bad idea. Bad habit. I end up not taking a shower till bed time and that’s when I feel truly refreshed. But I always try to start the day feeling fresh every single day. I hit the gym 3 x a week on average, take a shower, do my beauty routine, use a sun screen even if I’m not stepping out, and I always wear comfortable clothing. None of that Instagram fad of slaying at home because, WHY. It makes me feel pumped, powered and ready! Make it a routine to hit the gym first or do some light work out from home; yoga, Pilates, whatever rocks your boat. The rush of endorphins powers you. Get your body and mind in tune for the day you’re about to have.
Have your breakfast before you start work and if you’re not the type, always take your hour break! Take a nap, check in on your partner or roommate, watch an episode of that funny show you love, eat, take a coffee break, maybe even dinner prep, you’re on break and you’re at home, possibilities are endless.
When its time its time, the work doesn’t suddenly reduce because you’re working from home. Your company knows this too. But psychologically they make you believe that its an advantage that you’re at home. No its not, your work life balance is messed up, you never close from work now. You’re now always in it and one night closer to a mental breakdown. SO choose when you close your laptop and stand by it. Let your family know that when its over its over. Turn off your phone, turn off the lights, drink some tea and a book. Read book not drink of course.
Spend time doing what you love. Back then you close from work, sometimes late, and go hang with the boys, you go dancing, you go back home and change and put on night-time make up for some fancy dinner. Not anymore. By the time you close from work it’s too late to go anywhere or do anything before its curfew time, if your country allows you to step out at all. You’re tired all day; you’re there feeling like you’ve achieved nothing all day. So love your closing time with fervour and enjoy your weekends even more vigorously!
Enjoy friendships and family. Don’t spend all your weekend in a haze of partying and drinking. Don’t spend it fulfilling more obligations of different nature to anyone. Turn down that hangout. Or go out to that networking event and have healthy conversations. And if the week was so painful you could barely sleep, play catch up with your dreams.
Life is short, the 202X series is even shorter! Manifest only joy and peace.