Quarantine is the word of the year, no matter where you are or how hard you try to ignore it. Judging by the increased online activity of the masses, it would seem that many are struggling to repurpose the “excess” free time.
Need we say it doesn’t have to be like that?
Freelancers know a thing or two about daily routines while working from home. “Routine” might not be the right word, since working from home spells “freedom.”
Sadly, office workers have gotten so used to their schedules, making brief breaks even for their lunch, that they are at a complete loss now when they have whole days to arrange just as they like. For the most part, they don’t know what they like.
Lives of many are routines: getting up at a set time, getting ready for work, preparing breakfast, eating breakfast on the go, getting to the office right on time, working under pressure until the lunch break, working again after the lunch break, doing shopping on the way home, doing house chores, eating dinner, and finally getting some spare time (which is most often spent aimlessly staring at the screen to kill time before going to bed).
Seriously, don’t you realize how pointless it is? We know the argument about earning money, but, hey, people are working from home nowadays, earning the same wages. The only difference is – they have more spare time.
Just so you don’t get trapped into wasting it like so many others already do, here are some tips on how to use your time in a creative, beneficial and enjoyable way.
Boost Your Online Visibility
Let’s start with work. For many, it comes first. And let’s face it, not everyone can work from home. As a rule, people who are beset the hardest are those already barely making the ends meet. The ongoing quarantine has them hard-pressed because many cannot go to work and more still have lost their jobs.
Fortunately, the gig economy has never been stronger. Demand has never been this huge, and you really cannot convince me that “I don’t know how to do that.” Everyone can do SOMETHING online.
Dropshipping was all the rage until recently, but admittedly it is not for everyone. Customer support and home deliveries are just things, though.
Running your brand has never been easier, either. The key is to choose the right niche. I.e., there is a surge of tailors who have shifted to making face masks and selling them online. They are selling by the thousands, by the way.
So, how do you reach potential customers? As ever, SEO is the key. Your website needs to be VISIBLE. The rest will follow naturally. Given that you have plenty of spare time during the quarantine, why not spend some of it boosting your online presence?
Dedicated Home Office
Since the majority of your activities are to be done from home, it is highly recommended to dedicate one spot in your house for work. When you finish work for the day, don’t linger. Move on to other activities.
Some people have set up their makeshift offices in the garage or the attic, but not everyone’s homes include those. For the rest of us who live in humble apartments, a spot in a room must serve the purpose.
Don’t Forget to Bathe and Dress!
It may sound funny, but it isn’t. Many people tend to confuse the freedom that comes with working from home with slacking off all the time.
While I prefer leisure clothes to business attire, some people find that the exact opposite does the trick for them. Namely, it gives them the impression that they are working from a real office, not a makeshift one.
Whatever works for you is fine. If you don’t have to attend formal online meetings, comfortable clothes may serve you well. If not, well, wear your business attire.
With the quarantine stretching on, it is only too easy to lose track of days. Sooner or later, you’ll fall into the trap of bringing your coffee to your desk and just perch yourself on the pillow wearing your pyjamas. At first, it may sound like relaxation, but soon it will become boredom and burnout.
My advice is: stick to your morning routine. Take a shower as you normally would, wear whatever suits you, have breakfast and start your working day after that.
Don’t Forget to Exercise
Working out is good for the body, but also for the soul. It has never been more apparent than now when avoiding exercise has become a common occurrence.
There are no excuses. Now is the perfect time to test out different routines, since there are so many free exercise plans available online.
Stay Connected With Important People
On top of keeping in touch with your colleagues, it is important to regularly communicate with your friends and family. Of course, mobile phones still serve their original purpose, but there are more creative ways to communicate.
For example, I have many friends whose birthdays are in April. Because they cannot arrange gatherings as they normally would, they have turned to apps for help. A week ago, I attended a virtual B-Day party, which exceeded everyone’s expectations.
Many people throw virtual parties just for the fun of it. Google pyjama parties online and you’ll get the idea. In short, whatever keeps you engaged and well humoured is just the right choice.
People are trying their best to repurpose their lives in this time of crisis. Some are doing better than others, but everyone is experimenting. And that’s the key to a happy quarantine life – finding the right measure for work, exercise and fun.
As a couple of acquaintances have noticed: many people are about to discover what their kitchen looks like. Enjoy a home meal or two even if home delivery has never been more popular. You might rediscover that Mom’s dishes taste the best after all.