A Fashion Blog By Gemma Talbot

Monday, 23 March 2020

Staying Sane During Lockdown; 10 Tips For Working From Home

Happy Monday beautiful people. I hope today’s blog post is the Monday motivation you all need in your lives right now. As most of us will be working from home for the foreseeable future, I thought that this blog post could provide you with some tips to stay motivated and more importantly sane. I wanted to share a few tips and tricks I have learnt along the way as I’ve been working from home, blogging full time for over two years now. I know this may seem like a scary and unsettling time, but we are all in this together and the best thing we can do is be kind to each other and stay positive. This will pass but for now, we’ve all got to ride the COVID-19 wave and make the best of a bad situation. We’ve got this. 

I’m going to get straight to the point. Some of you may already have found this out for yourself but one of the hardest parts about working from home is the distractions. There is something about being glued to an office desk that eradicates this altogether. Or maybe it’s the commute setting your mind up for a working day. Either way, the distractions faced when working from home can be completely far fetched. As someone who isn’t really the biggest fan of household chores (I’m more of a put it off but once motivated love cleaning kind of gal) my mind runs away with me in all kinds of ways. Do I need to put a wash on? Did I take down the rubbish? Was that the doorbell I heard? You get my drift…SO many distractions. I am not going to lie, working from home does require you to be both self motivated and disciplined but once you’ve got it locked down (no pun intended) you’ll probably actually prefer it. That or you’ll actually be counting down the days you get to see Karen from HR’s face again. 

If you’re reading this post this morning, implement the below into your working day to keep you motivated. If you’ve missed the Monday morning wave, then tomorrow is always a new day. 


1. STICK TO YOUR MORNING ROUTINE

Set your alarm as normal. Mine is set for 7:30am every weekday. If you have a routine before work, stick to it. Mine involves waking up and heading straight to the bathroom where I’ll cleanse my face with the Emma Hardie moringa light cleanser gel and brush my teeth. A recent addition to my morning skin care routine, is to use the Foreo Luna mini 2 facial cleansing device (I’d 100% recommend it to anyone) which really wakes up my skin. From here, I’ll have a shower and begin the process of getting ready. Once I’ve cleansed, toned and moisturised, I’ll pop on my dressing gown and slippers and head to the kitchen to make myself a coffee. After all, life begins after coffee. I’ve made sure to stock up on Oatly barista edition oat milk and coffee pods for my Nespresso machine. 


2. WRITE A TO-DO LIST

From here, I’ll use my Law of Attraction daily planner to write down my to-do list and affirmations. This planner has literally changed my working from home life so I really would suggest everyone getting one. If you miss a day, it doesn’t matter as you write in everything so you can be pretty flexible with it. Yes I am anal like that. I really find that planning my day helps me enormously as it sets my brain up for the day ahead and gives it some structure. Write down what you want your actual morning to look like and this way you can set aside enough time for it. This planner allows you to set your daily tasks by time which I find particularly helpful. Personally, I like to move at a slightly slower pace in the morning. Make myself a coffee and really wake up but everyone is different. 



3. GET DRESSED

Personally, this is one of the most important steps in working from home. Whilst working in your pyjamas is tempting, I’ve found it always sets me up for an unproductive day. If I’ve reached the end of the day and achieved very little, it leaves me feeling incredibly deflated. Taking a shower and getting dressed for the day acts as a signal to your brain that you mean business and alters your mindset. Staying in pjs is your way of telling your brain it’s a Netflix and chill kind of day. Even if this is just joggers and a hoodie, anything is better than pyjamas. I’ve linked some cute and affordable loungewear options for you below that will make self isolating a little more bearable. I've asked my followers on Instagram to @ me in their stories with the hashtag #WorkFromHomeButMakeItFashion 💁🏼





Once dressed, I’ll head to the kitchen and make breakfast. I am a creature of habit so tend to have protein porridge topped with berries and peanut butter. It requires next to no attention as I cook the oats in the microwave but is a good nutritious breakfast that sets me up for the day and more often than not leaves me full until lunch time. 


4. WHATEVER YOU DO DON’T WORK FROM YOUR BED

I know not everyone has a home office, I actually don’t. It’s definitely a priority for me in the future when I move home, but create a designated work space. Sometimes, I completely clear my dressing table and place my laptop on here or I’ll use the front room. I do tend to work from coffee shops too but when we are self isolating, this isn’t an option. Please note, we shall never take our freedom for granted again. There are many a times I have worked from my bed and I can tell you now it does not end well. If you work and sleep in your room it leaves your mind feeling cluttered and is very hard to switch off. I’m speaking from experience here. I like to work ideally in the sitting room and use my bedroom as my space to switch off and watch films or read a book in the evening. You don’t mix business and pleasure so don’t mix work and leisure either. The kitchen is fine, just anywhere you can leave and shut the door once you have clocked off for the day. Trust me it works.



5. ELIMINATE DISTRACTIONS

Working from home and creating content means it’s fundamental that my creative juices are flowing so to speak. Distractions are my worst enemy and I need to avoid these as much as possible. My biggest distraction is my phone which I turn over and put out of arms reach. If I pick up my phone and go on Instagram mid work flow, it could be an hour lost easily. I’d avoid staying away from anywhere that has a T.V. and use this only for relax/switch off time. You know what your personal distractions are so do your best to be rid of them. Again, you need to get into the mindset of actually working from home. 


6. BE MINDFUL OF OTHERS WORKING FROM HOME

We are all in this together and whilst it’s not ideal, we’ve got to make the best of a bad situation. Usually I work from home and have free reign of the flat, which allows me to create content in communal spaces as and when I please. Now my flatmates Xantha and Sophie are also working from home, it feels a little crowded to say the least. As a content creator, making content that you guys can enjoy and relate to is an absolute priority for me. Make sure you keep an eye on my Instagram and YouTube channel because I will have lots of new content coming out for you guys over the next few days and weeks. As well as additional blog posts too. If I need to use the communal space, I give my flat mates a heads up and vice versa so we can all feel comfortable and are able to get on with our jobs. 


7. TAKE REGULAR BREAKS

Taking breaks doesn’t make you a doss at your job. In actual fact taking a regular 15 minute break every hour, breaks up the day and makes it more enjoyable. There are many things you can do on a break. Take your dog for a walk (if you have one), make a tea or coffee, check Instagram or do a quick online browse of your favourite brands (*cough New In ASOS). I’ll even watch a YouTube video that is around 15 minutes long and sometimes watching something that isn’t work is a great way to take your mind off things and come back with some new energy. 



8. TAKE A FULL HOUR LUNCH BREAK/GO OUTSIDE

I find this so important and helps me immensely. Not only does it give my day structure but it really helps to hit the reset button and get back to work. I always try and make something nutritious and filling that will prevent me from eating the entire contents of my cupboard. This is one of the great things about working from home. When on the move, it can be quite hard to eat well and now there really is no excuse. Some of my favourites include: smoked salmon and scrambled eggs on rye bread, salmon with tenderstem broccoli and brown rice or fajita chicken with brown rice, peppers and sugar snap peas (basically fajitas without the wrap). You can also prepare extra the night before so you just have to heat it up in the microwave the following day. Use this as an opportunity to watch an episode of your favourite Netflix Series or listen to a podcast. I would advise here getting outside be that just for a 15-20 minute walk. Fresh air does the world of good. If you can get to the gym great but a walk is a great way to break up the day.

Don’t use the weather as an excuse either. There have been times where the last thing I have wanted to do is step outside. I’ll always try and do it though come wind, rain or shine and it always makes me feel refreshed and energised. 


9. MOVE

I would usually advise going to the gym but during lockdown this is probably not going to be possible. Home workouts are a great way to move your body. Anything from yoga to a HIIT session will really help to clear your head and pull you away from your laptop. Joe Wicks does great at home HIIT workouts on YouTube and also fitness influencers Lisa Fit and Courtney J Black both post at home workouts that require no equipment. I’ve also seen that Megan Grubb has been going live on Instagram with home workouts so definitely keep your eyes peeled for that. I am definitely going to get an at home workout filmed for my fitness page, which I’ll share once it is up. 



10. SET A STRICT SCHEDULE

I left this one until last because whilst all 9 points are very important for staying motivated when working from home. None will be achieved if you don’t set yourself a strict schedule. Admittedly, you can be a little more lenient especially as you don’t have a manager breathing down your neck but you’re still working. Write those to-do lists, get yourself the Law of Attraction daily planner and most importantly get out of your pyjamas. Think work from home loungewear goddess, not WFH slob. Just remember we are all in this together and this weird and unsettling time will pass.
If you work from home and have some tips to share with us that I didn’t cover, that would be amazing. I know we are all in need of some extra help and motivation at the moment. 
I wanted to end this blog post with a message that I saw on Instagram recently. 


“Note to the world:
Check in on your loved ones, 
Be kind to yourself and stay safe, 
We can all get through this together.”


Sending you lots of love ❤️

Aeriel Disney hooded loungewear set worn in this blog post can be found here.
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