Tips to Stay Sane Juggling the “New Normal”
How to Improve Your Work from Home Experience
This “New Normal” we’re all living in is something to behold: the spouse singing bad karaoke in the background of your Zoom meetings, the baby dribbling food down the front of your good “work” pajamas, going to sleep late (waking up even later), and trying to decide whether or not to cut your own hair. It can be a handful but there are some things you can do to help keep yourself sane during these strange times and combat the detrimental effects of life as we know it.
1) Ration the Snacks!
There is something to be said for the power of comfort food but having a myriad of tasty treats within arm’s reach all day is not the best way to care for yourself when working from home. You don’t fill your desk drawer at the office with all those forbidden treats, so create a little space at home too. Hide those temptations away so they’re effectively out of sight and they’ll be out of mind before you know it.
Buy Better, Be Better
Even better than stuffing all that leftover candy and high-calorie salty snacks deep in the back of the cupboard is keeping them out of the house altogether. The next time you gear up for an adventure to the grocery store or fill your online shopping cart, skip those empty temptations that you constantly eat too many of—you know, the ones that have no nutritional value at all and don’t seem to touch those hunger pangs you think you feel.
Instead, opt for healthier options like fresh fruit and veggies (loaded with vitamins and minerals), low-calorie high-fiber options that fill you up quicker and help you stay fuller longer, and options that you can make up in advance and keep handy to graze on between staff meetings in your living room and trying to bathe the kids without pulling your hair out.
2) Make the Schedule—You’re the Boss Now
Our old normal was weeks filled with days that were regimented into hours. Those hours were designated as “productive” or “personal” and within the two we were expected to get certain things done.
The “New Normal” just seems to be chaos with us getting things done in any order when we can.
Instill order in your personal and professional workspace again with a schedule.
- Set a designated wake-up time (nobody cares if it is two hours later than it used to be)
- Get dressed to go to “work” (this is important for your self-image and your mental health)
- Allot hours for work, hours for family, and hours for your own personal recreation
And don’t forget to schedule some time for your personal health as well—it can make a big difference when combatting that house arrest weight gain.
Use some of your spare time to start meal planning for a few days out of the week. Even if you create a schedule that includes just one healthier meal a day it can have a tremendous impact on your well being (and your waistline).
Think you’re too far gone to get back on track with your old weight loss routine? The Hollywood 48-Hour Miracle Diet® can help you lose up to 10 pounds in just two days!
Don’t Lose Track of Time
It’s easy to just let the time slip by when you’re staring at the same four walls every day (kind of like when you were back at work, right?) So set reminders (cellphone alarms if you have to) to for important things like:
- Drinking water (staying hydrated is healthy and helps you lose weight)
- Stretching (don’t forget how to stand up)
- Mealtimes (this will help you avoid overeating and snacking between meals)
- Bedtime (healthy amounts of sleep reset your biological functions and help you stay alert for the next round of bingeing on your new favorite series)
3) Remember, Kindness Flows Both Ways
We’ve all seen extraordinary examples of kindness and compassion in the past few weeks but remember to be kind to yourself too. Your mental wellbeing is important and maintaining that positive attitude can be a trial even without the unnecessary self-shame you feel criticizing your own activity levels.
Be kind to yourself. Forgive yourself. Take joy in the simple things that make every day special—even if it does feel like Groundhog Day all over again.
Can’t seem to stay motivated? Look to YouTube or other social outlets for inspiration. There are a ton of fun and innovative examples of how you can turn your home into a fully-functioning gym. Use the kitchen chairs for dips and push-ups. Use those gallons of water for kettlebells. Use the kids as resistance weight. Create your own personalized exercise routine at home.
Craving something more cardio intense? Check out POPSUGAR Fitness’ 30-minute feel-good strength & cardio workout.
If you can get out of the house, it’s a good time to take up long walks around the neighborhood, trail hiking, and bike riding, but remember productive tasks like yard work and home maintenance counts as exercise as well (plus the results can be impressive). As an added bonus, this time outside allows you to disconnect from the constant 24/7 barrage of information we’re all under as of late.
Don’t Expect Miracles, Just Progress
Nobody says you have to come out the other side of this situation a completely productive, obsessively organized, and well-sculpted individual. (And if you’re saying that, stop.) Set small goals—like staying sane while living in close quarters with the kids, the spouse, the dogs, and the snacks. We are supporting you with compassion and understanding as we all just do our best.