10 Things Dr. Belo Did While Under Quarantine
August 27, 2020
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We’re many, many months into a global pandemic, but for the most part, we’ve cobbled together some sense of normalcy: cultivating potted plants, finally learning to use the oven, making necessary furniture upgrades, etcetera, etcetera.
But working from home comes with its challenges, chief among them the loss of any demarcation between work and home. Creating morning and evening rituals can help signal a day’s beginning and end, allowing you to focus when you need to focus—and most of all, help you make the most of your time off. Here’s how to do just that.
When you wake up, you should be doing everything to gear you up for the day ahead. That means treating it like any normal day…and not sauntering over to your desk in the same clothes you wore in bed. There has to be a clear indication that bedtime is over and work is beginning. A sample routine: wake up, wash face, change into “work outfit,” brew coffee, prepare and eat breakfast, take vitamins, put on sunscreen…and only then should you sit down to begin work. In the absence of a morning commute, a fixed, multi-step routine will get you out of that hazy 8 AM rut. (Related: How a “Fake Commute” Can Restore Your Mental Health This Quarantine)
The pandemic has exacerbated an always-on work culture, which makes it difficult for you to step back and decide, “OK, that’s enough work for today.” People are overworked, stressed, and eager to go back to the office, according to a report by Bloomberg. That’s why it’s imperative that you take charge of your mental health. As important as it is to prep your mind for work time, you must be decisive about your rest time, too. (Related: How to Protect Your Mental Health During a Quarantine)
At the office, you clocked out at a certain time, right? Make it exactly the same at home. At 5 or 6 PM, fold that laptop closed and refrain from replying to work-related messages—even if you feel the urge to. Remember, what you do on your own time is your business, and there’s no shame in clocking out down to the exact minute.
Then, craft a wind-down routine of your choice. Have you ever lost track of time during a workday? You decide to take an extra hour to get some more work out of the way, and before you know it, it’s 10 PM and you have to go to bed. To avoid this, be mindful of your free time and enjoy it unapologetically. Does it involve cooking a great dinner, or ordering in? Hot shower, or quick sheet mask? Scented candles, or essential oil diffuser? Golden milk, or herbal tea? Netflix or YouTube? Completely up to you, as long as it’s what you wanna do with your free time. (Just don’t forget to stay consistent with your skincare routine—we have a few easy-to-use kits that can help.)
Living in the new normal can be rough. By creating little corners of peace and quiet for yourself, you can keep your mental health intact—and cultivate feelings of gratitude and contentment, despite the circumstances. Breathe, remind yourself that you’ll make it out OK, and you’ll be just fine. We’re rooting for you.