Welcome to a world of wedding ramblings.
Here you'll typically find an array of topics from fun, inspirational posts to a more thoughtful perspective on something topical.
There's no particular order or continuity to my blogging (sorry!) I just share my thoughts with you as and when they come to me. or I need to get something off my chest.
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This is my first blog post that has absolutely nothing to do with weddings!
Photo Credit: Cecelina Photography
Instead I’m here to talk about the thing most of us are doing right now…working from home.
This is one part of all this craziness that I actually haven’t been affected by. I work from home all day every day (minus the few days of the year that I’m onsite at a wedding, visiting clients or on site inspections) so, let’s start by saying, welcome to my world…..
I actually love working from home. Before the dramas of Covid-19 people would regularly say things like ‘I wish I could work from home’, ‘you’re so lucky you can work when you want’ (as if this somehow means I choose to work less?!), ‘why do you bother to put makeup on when you’re just at home all day?’ and all sorts of similar comments along these lines.We’re a few weeks into this now, so you may already have the answer to each of these, but if you’re struggling to find your work from home rhythm, here’s some top tips to help you get in the swing of it….
1) Have a separate space
I appreciate this may be easier said than done. As working from home is my full time thing, I’m lucky that I have a dedicated office in the house, complete with a spare desk for the days when my partner also has to work from home (which is all the time at the moment).
If you have a spare room in your house that you can use, then amazing, use it, but if not try and find yourself a dedicated area that you can use as your desk or work space….and no, the sofa does not count.
Get yourself a table (preferably separate to the dining table) and put it somewhere…spare room, corner of the lounge, hall way, landing, wherever suits you best, but know that this is where you come in the morning, and then you leave it there.
It’s important to have somewhere you can close the office door on, so to speak.
2) Create a routine
Routine is essential, especially if you’re not used to working from home. Okay…in the first few days allow yourself a lie in, be a bit lazy if needed, but then get it together and set an alarm. You will more than likely benefit from a later alarm anyway as I’m sure the commute from the bedroom to the kitchen is shorter than your usual one.
Just because you’re at home, doesn’t mean you’re not going to work. If you work for someone, rather than yourself, then it’s easy to get a little lax here, you know you’re not being watched 24/7 and so those working hours start to become a little lose, but even so, set yourself a time that you plan to be in your ‘office’ by, and stick to it each day.
3) Get showered and dressed
Photo credit: Cecelina Photography
This is something girlfriends have challenged in the past – why I bother to get myself dressed and put makeup on when I’m not even leaving the house.
I understand the debate, and if only working from home on the occasional day then I can see the opportunity to take it as a lazy day, but if you’re a few weeks in to this by now, you’ll probably know now that it’s not good to do every day.
For me, getting up, showered, dressed and made up gets me in the right frame of mind. It sets the tone for the day and shifts my mindset. You feel more professional if you’re well presented than if you’re sat in bed, with a scruffy bun on your head and your laptop on your knees.
That’s not to say you have to have your best clothing on or a full face of makeup, even if you’re getting dressed into fresh loungewear and putting on some mascara I find it helps me to feel much more together.
This is something I urge you do to even if you’re not working right now. Everyone loves a lazy day every now and then, but if it becomes every single day it definitely has a negative effect on mentality.
When you’re in the comfort of your own home you’d think there would be more temptation to take breaks, but actually I find the opposite.
There’s no onsite coffee shop to pop to (just the kitchen), there’s no one to meet for lunch (just your partner who is in the house with you 24/7 at the moment anyway) and there’s no meetings in another part of the building (just over Zoom at your desk).
I frequently sit at my desk without even realising where the time has gone, usually it dawns on me at the point I realise I haven’t been to the loo all day!
Photo Credit: Cecelina Photography
Put some time in your schedule to take a break, especially around lunch time. I don’t take an hour at lunch like I used to when I worked for a company, but I do take time to go downstairs and have my lunch at the table or in the garden when the weather’s nice. I’ll eat and then get straight back to it, but even those 15 minutes away for the desk are good.
Usually in the afternoon I’ll take the dog for a walk too….you’ll find your step count drops a LOT when working from home compared to in an office, so even if you don’t have a dog a 10 minute exercise stroll is definitely worthwhile.
Whenever anyone discusses the whole working from home thing with me, the downside they always mention is that they ‘would miss seeing people’.
I get this. Sometimes it can feel a little lonely working by yourself without the office banter flying around, but I spend my days talking with clients, suppliers and planning colleagues so I don’t tend to feel this.
I’m still communicating with people, all day every day, it just tends to be virtually rather than in person….something we are all feeling even more used to at the moment.
Schedule a regular team meeting or maybe just a virtual coffee break catch up with a colleague so you still feel in the loop and part of a wider team.
As we start another new week in lockdown, I hope you feel ready to take it on from home, in the swing of not-so-new working life. Fingers crossed the return to the actual office isn’t too much of a struggle when the time comes, oh and in the meantime, try not to eat all the house snacks in one day!