Miracles do happen - an extra hour per day just fell from the sky into our laps and our heads are spinning with possibility! As we lean in with our families & pets while we socially distance during the COVID-19 pandemic, the big question is, what's the best use of this free time you now have?
We've done the math....and many of us are gaining way more than an extra hour each day. We love an equation so we've done the calcs below for you.
Breaking it down, if we calculate the difference in time it takes between pulling on your trackies & adjusting your top knot, against executing a blow dry that slays & styling that divine office blazer, then we gain a saving of at least 35 minutes - maybe more if you're like my 22 year old daughter who contours her foundation like a BOSS.
Add to this number the time it takes for your morning commute (has to be 30 minutes at least non?), plus the time you're typically required to attend meetings (30 mins if you're lucky and truth be told said meeting probably should have been an email in the first place), plus productivity losses from being in the general office environment (20 minutes - you know it's more). Shopping is going to take longer than usual considering the queues, so we'll take some time away for that task, but altogether you've already gained around an hour and a bit each day on the conservative side - not counting the commute home. What the!
So you've identified your extra time, the real question is what to do with it!
We're totally pumped about this once in a lifetime opportunity and you should be too because guess what? The next couple of months gives us an opportunity to align this free time with achieving the personal goals we set for ourselves at the start of the year.
Remember the things you promised yourself at that NYE party?!
Maybe your 2020 life goals were grounded in getting more zen, improving your general wellbeing, or perhaps you set the intention during the NYE party to do something new...whatever floats your boat, we've put together a plan for how to easily action those goals and level-up your life in the coming weeks.
Grab a pen. It's time to cast your mind back to midnight on NYE to recall the things you wanted to achieve in 2020 - you might have shouted these wishes from the balcony or kept them private in your head, or maybe you wrote them down in a journal or shared them with your bestie.
If these goals are still relevant to your vibe today, then get this stuff down on paper - stat. If the goals need tweaking, now's the time to update. Either way, write this stuff down.
If you didn't set any goals it doesn't matter - your time has arrived to allocate some time to personal goal setting. This is bucket list stuff TBH. I like to use NYE to set big, hairy, audacious personal goals, so go nuts - don't limit yourself.
Maybe you've been thinking of learning to be a yoga instructor? Maybe you've always wanted to do a part time creative writing course. Maybe you really want to learn how to DJ.
This is your time to get creative, dig deep and identify the things you really, really want to learn or improve on and enjoy for joy's sake. Write these things down.
For some of us, working from home will be a new experience. It will be fun, exciting and daunting all at once. For others, it's SOP. Either way, there are two deal-breaker rules to follow when working from home.
One - get dressed and don't work in your PJ's. Sure - wear something comfy but defs change out of your PJ's - it will help set your mind into work mode.
Two - put housework blinkers on. Seriously. Just because you might see jobs around the home which need doing, doesn't mean you actually need to give them your attention! It's a trap with a bottomless pit attached to it.
DO NOT clean. DO NOT pack away washing. DO NOT pack away the dishes. Put simply, don't clutter your new-found priceless hours with activities like cleaning the shower. It will kill your vibe and this precious extra time, not to mention impacting productivity for your actual work hours.
There's one caveat to wearing house work blinkers - and that is if your goal is to Marie Kondo your house - then, YASSSS these activities will be on your list.
Time to pull out your diary, e-cal, Trello board or whatever your scheduling poison is, and start scheduling the goal list you generated above. The first things you need to do is identify all the little steps you need to take to get you to your goal.
Easier said than done sometimes but if you need a hand on which tasks to schedule, we've got a blog post on exactly how to tackle big goals one step at a time here.
Once you have a huge lists of tasks, it's time to schedule them into manageable pieces. There's plenty of ways to tackle the scheduling of tasks. One way is by grouping the goals into similar activities like knocking off all your physical activity in the morning and reading/watching You-tube how-to's in the afternoon.
Another way of managing scheduling these activities is per activity with each day of the week dedicated to a different goal. Whichever way you group your activities, give yourself at least 20 minutes to work on it.
Time to take action. You've identified the amount of time you have, you've listed your goals, you've broken the goals into tasks and you've set your schedule. The planning can often be the easiest part. It's the doing that will make a difference here. Actually sticking to your schedule and knocking your tasks off is where the magic happens. And because you're working on things you've always wanted to, you're going to crush it even when it gets hard!
The COVID-19 pandemic is unprecedented in our lifetime and this time can feel really unsettling and isolating. But if we can use some of the time we have gained while working from home and staying-in instead of heading to an organised activity and commuting, then we can turn this time into really valuable self care time.
Importantly recording our experiences right now through journaling is both therapeutic and a great reference for our grand children as we live through a time when things unfold at break-neck speed, and changes to our daily habits are forced upon us each hour.
As Michael Gibson reminds us, nearly 400 years ago in the mid 1600's Issac Newton quarantined himself due to the plague raging through Europe. During this time he discovered calculus, the laws of motion, and stuck a bodkin in his eye to study optics. How will you spend the next few months?
We'd love to hear what your personal 2020 goals are and what things you'll do in your social distancing free-time to achieve some of them?! Peace out.
Image Sara Shakeel
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