I don’t know about you, but when you get given ‘more’ time, do you think there’s a tendency to try to fill it?

In the current pandemic many of us are confined to our homes.  Which means that we don’t have a commute, many of our daily pressures have fizzled away because everyone is in the same boat, and life has slowed as companies are forced to ‘stop’ for a while.

So in the absence of a normal routine, you then heap on the pressure to ‘get out there’ online in case people forget who you are.  You burn the candle at both ends working out how on earth to ‘pivot’ and transform your business so you can still earn money and grow.  You’re madly looking at people like Joe Wicks, wondering what trick you’ve missed to get national exposure, and then spend the rest of your day beating yourself up that you haven’t even got out of your pyjamas and tackled a Facebook live.You don’t have to be something you’re not.
You don’t have to have all the answers figured out right now.
It’s OK to be worried.

Spending some time quietly considering your options and thinking through how you wish to navigate the next few months is far better than a knee-jerk reaction.

“If I had four hours to chop down a tree, I’d spend the first two hours sharpening the axe.
Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe.
If I had 8 hours to chop down a tree, I would spend 6 of those hours sharpening my axe.”

Making yourself a priority is going to pay dividends later on when everyone else has spent 23 hours staring at a screen.

Here are 5 top tips that you might like to think about over the weekend:

1.  Set yourself a ‘new routine’ that has a fixed bed and get-up time.  Make sure you shower/bath every day and dress appropriately for the day.  Even if you are now wearing ‘comfy’ clothes make sure you’ve brushed your hair and put on a splash of lipgloss or whatever makes you feel good.

2.  Eat well.  We may be a little restricted with what we can buy, and we may need to be more careful with the pennies, but you don’t have to eat half a pack of chocolate digestives every afternoon.

3.  Consider planning on paper.  It’s proven that holding a pen and writing down thoughts and ideas is far more effective for your brain than working digitally.  Get yourself a nice new notebook and let your mind wander – write everything you can think of.  Get your worries out of your head and soon there will be space for the juicy, creative ideas to spark.  So much has gone online lately you will be spending a lot of time looking at a screen.  Paper and pen will be a welcome break.

4.  If you want someone to help implement your plans, hire a VA (like me!).  Many people have turned to outsourced help now because with the right person it’s flexible, you don’t need to learn new skills and you can handover the bits you don’t like doing.

5.  Don’t compare yourself to others.  Be mindful of your competition but stay in your own lane.  Work hard but don’t overdo it – think about a time when you have done your best work.  I bet it’s not when you’re exhausted from running around like a headless chicken.

Take some time out this weekend to relax.  Do what some of the employed people are doing and sit on the sofa for a bit (tee hee!) and look after yourself.  Get some fresh air and come back on Monday morning raring to go.  

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