Who would argue that the effects of COVID-19 have impacted each of us tremendously? A major change for all of us is the way we are now having to work.
Since the CDC and our state have implemented new guidelines for us over the last few weeks, many of us have traded professional offices for the spare bedroom or kitchen table.
I am one of those. Previously, a normal workday would look something like this:
5:00-6:00 a.m. – Gym
7:00-8:45 – Business Networking meeting with about 20 attendees
9:00 – In the office to call clients follow up with prospective clients
10:45 – Emails
11:00-12:00 p.m. – Office meeting, with about 30 other real estate agents
1:00-2:00 – A client meeting for coffee
2:00-3:30 – Showing properties
4:00-5:30 – Administrative tasks and email
5:30-9 – Family time
Now, because I’m practicing social distancing and avoiding unnecessary gatherings, my schedule has shifted to look more like the following:
6:30 a.m. – Devotions
7:00-8:30 – Zoom networking meeting at the kitchen table
8:30-9:00 – Breakfast with Family
9:00 – Client calls from the spare bedroom
12:00 – Emails
12:30-1:00 – Lunch
1:00-3:00 – Client meetings via Zoom calls
3:00-3:30 – Emails and administrative tasks
3:30-5:00 – Workout from the basement.
5:30-10:00 – Family time
What’s not mentioned above (in the current schedule) are the random knocks on the “office” door from my 19 month old son, the occasional diaper changes, or hearing “The Wiggles” playing in the background. While working from home is convenient in many ways, it certainly represents challenges and “opportunities” to make adjustments.
Since my “gym” is now directly underneath my bedroom, I’ve decided to work out in the afternoon rather than early morning, to avoid waking up my wife and son. However, I still choose to wake up early to maintain a certain discipline. While working from home, it is easy to slip into “weekend mode” where only doing the bare minimum becomes acceptable and settling for lethargy is okay. Although I am home more, I strive to still be productive when I’m working, and I strive to maintain focus. I know if I ease up now, getting back into good habits will be that much harder, once “normal life” resumes.
Another struggle with working from home is that it can become a 24/7 job. When the laptop is only a couple feet away, it can be very tempting to keep checking email, and catching up on other tasks. It’s difficult to remember to turn the work side of the brain off. This is something I still struggle with but am making strides forward.
One boundary I’ve practiced is not just closing out work tabs or turning off the computer, but to actually place it in the other room, so it’s less tempting to open up and resume working, when I should focus on being present with my family.
A discipline that is important in this time of quarantine is to keep the body moving. While many gyms around the country have shut their doors as a preventative measure, it is still crucial to exercise. This is why I’ve decided to go from exercising 4-5 times a week to 6. Even if you don’t have access to workout equipment, it’s amazing what can be done with old fashioned push-ups, planks and walking or running. When we exercise, it releases certain chemicals in our body that help deal with stress and increase our ability to think clearly. I believe these benefits alone are worthwhile to consider adding exercise into your daily routine.
One thing’s for certain, while many Americans are home from the office right now, this too shall pass. When it does, what healthy habits or lifestyle will you wish you would have adapted now?
By Bret Merson, MREC Board Member
Keller Williams Realty – You may reach Bret at firstname.lastname@example.org
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