One Way to Feel Human While Social Distancing
You are probably finding yourself spending a majority, if not all, of your time at home with no clearcut sign of when it will end:
- You’ve probably heard somebody say 4 weeks
- You’ve probably heard somebody say through summer
- You’ve probably heard somebody say well into 2021
Regardless of what “somebody says,” there’s a simple way you can feel more like yourself when faced with this situation: make yourself a schedule.
What Happens Without It?
You’ve probably begun to do this already:
- You either found no motivation in working from home and so it was sparse (kids, dog, and spouse probably don’t help either) if at all
- Or, you did nothing but work because you could. After all, you don’t NEED to put pants on
Either way, you probably aren’t feeling like you and you’re thinking, “how in the world am I going to make it a couple of weeks let alone a month or two?”
Work vs Home
This is not just figurative [for your family] but it is literal in regards to your schedule.
When you commute to go to work, this is what happens:
- You “get ready” for work
- You shower [hopefully]
- You get dressed in “work clothes”
- You get your coffee or your fourth coffee
- [I hope] you eat something
- You jump in your car
- You drive to a location where you get into “work mode”
- When you’re done, you drive back home for “home mode”
Contrast this with what is likely happening right now:
- You’re NOT “getting ready for work”
- You probably didn’t shower first thing
- Your work clothes might NOT include pants
- I can’t be 100% sure what you’re drinking all day
- You likely snack on something when your’e hungry but don’t have a meal
- If you jump in your car it’s to escape your family for a few minutes and NOT because you’ve got somewhere to go
- There is no “work mode” just like there’s no “home mode”
- This is one big gray area for you
With all this in mind, you might be spending your day thinking “I should be working” while you’re spending your time with your family or relaxing on your own; or you’re thinking “I should be spending my time relaxing or with my family” while you’re working.
Setting Boundaries for Work
Set yourself hours. Be strict with it.
- What time will you get up every day?
- Make this consistent regardless of the day. Your body will thank you.
- What time will you “get ready for work” during the week?
- This can be a trigger for making sure you’re not just working, you’re focused.
- What time will you be spending family time in the morning?
- These other people who live in your house are probably your family. You time with them.
- This is one reason work boundaries are important.
- What time you will be working from and what time will you stop?
- Be strict, here. When you’re “at home,” make sure you are at home.
- When you’re “at work,” make sure you are at work.
Setting appointments with yourself is another great way to break up your work day:
- Set an appointment to get up out of your home office [or your dining room table] to take a walk
- Fresh air and a little bit of activity will keep you sane.
- It just so happens this will help you manage your blood sugar as well.
- This should be daily.
- Set an appointment to just sit and be present
- This does not have to be a religious thing. Just sit for 5 minutes and breathe.
- This should also be daily.
- Set a time to workout
- This is a major setting change and an important stress relief.
- Plus, if you think you can’t get freaking fit while at home, you’re talking to the wrong guy.
- You could schedule this 3 to 4 times per week.
- Set an appointment to “hang out” with your friends, virtually
- You want to see them and they likely want to see you
- This does not need to be daily. What days of the week do you want to spend time with them?
You will likely try some things and have to change those things. This is not bad. You are, after all, finding a new normal.
Be flexible in how your schedule changes BUT set yourself a schedule. You will not only thank you but the people around you will thank you.
We are all in this thing together so if you need help, reach out to someone. You might be socially distant but you are most definitely not alone.