In recent weeks, life has changed dramatically all around the world. The global Covid-19 or coronavirus pandemic has seen us confined to our homes and adhering to strict social distancing measures when we do venture out for essentials or exercise. It has also drastically altered the way we work.
Finding a work-life balance is a struggle at the best of times. With the majority of UK workers now working from home, this need for balance is a matter of staying safe, sane, and productive. In this blog post, we share four of the best ways to find a new work-life balance during lockdown.
1. Don’t underestimate the importance of routine
With life as we know it turned upside down, the regular and often mundane routines we may have taken for granted are no doubt a thing of the past.
But the current lockdown situation should not be an excuse to relinquish routine completely. Maintaining a regular routine, even when times are tough, will work wonders for your health and wellbeing.
Psychologist and research scientist Navya Singh, PysD, explains more about the importance of maintaining a regular routine at this challenging time:
“This is actually a time when we need to remember and be mindful of how we are living our lives in this very different way. So, we need to keep our lives as close to our routine as possible. If you’re working from home, get up at the same time and get dressed.
You might just be going to the next room or working from your bedroom, but just have that same sense of routine and normalcy, which will help you feel less disrupted.”
Simple things like getting up and going to bed at the same time, having set meal times, and scheduling in exercise will keep you moving and motivated whatever your day brings.
2. Aim to achieve something every single day
Whether you’ve been furloughed or are juggling working life from home, aiming to achieve something (or multiple things) will ensure no day is wasted during lockdown.
Make sure your to-do list includes a mix of work and home life aims and feel a sense of accomplishment with every passing day. Keep every goal realistic and achievable however – don’t give yourself a mountain to climb.
3. Stick to your working hours – no late night emails!
When working from home it can be so easy to let your work life seep into your home life. Make sure your new routine includes set working hours and try not to deviate from these too much.
Finding a new work-life balance isn’t about working all day and all night. Set yourself boundaries, start, and finish your work on time, and try to forget about work once you clock off for the day. This includes ignoring late night work emails.
As well as starting and finishing work on time, be sure to schedule regular breaks just as you would at work. Regular breaks are important when working from home and you’ll be all the more productive, creative, and healthier for them! A recent study found that half of those surveyed who took short, regular breaks boosted their performance by 33%.
4. Make time for you in your new normal
It can be so easy to let work and looking after your family take over your entire routine, but don’t forget to look after yourself.
Finding time to relax is important so try to give yourself a break. Do something you enjoy at least once a day, whether that means taking a bath with a glass of wine and a good book or letting off some steam with a home workout.
Spending quality time together as a family is also vital. Check out our great ideas for your big nights in for inspiration.