Work & Life At Home Routine – Part 1
In the midst of COVID-19, many people have found themselves suddenly working from home for the first time. For others whose jobs don’t give them an option to work from home, they are suddenly stuck inside without their regular work and home life routine to keep them on track. We’ve seen posts on social media surrounding this issue, where even regular life admin, self-care, and hygiene tasks have fallen by the wayside.
Our staff at Vine Street Digital work from home by default; we don’t have a regular office. We’ve had experience with having to craft our lives around remote work, where we can mould the day to our liking. It’s okay to do things out of the box, to break away from the idea of sticking to a 9-5 routine.
So, here’s part one of our staff describing what their average day looks like!
My daily routine is fairly structured and is centred around staying active while WFH. Previously, I’d walk to the train and to my workplace. However, now my walk to work is from my bed to the office in the next room. To keep active, I wake up at roughly 6:30am, take my dogs for a walk, make some brekky and be ready to start work at 8am.
I’ll normally go to the gym at lunch when it’s quieter, and finish with yoga in the afternoon. I’ll do the washing/housework during the week so that I can free up my weekend from boring chores. The best part of all this is that I’m normally finished with my daily routine (work, gym & chores) at the same time I was previously getting home from work. So, I have a much better work/life balance!
My typical day starts with me waking up between 6.45 and 7.15am. I have a back-up alarm set for 7.30am but I usually wake up naturally on my own, which has been an amazing benefit of flexi hours. I start my day brushing my teeth, taking my vitamins & brushing my hair. I also take the time to do a skincare routine which is a nice “me-time” activity. Then it’s time to change out of my pyjamas. I don’t dress up or put make-up on, but I definitely pick a comfortable outfit for the day that’s not just sleepwear.
Once I’m ready, I make my bed and I make it real nice. I tuck in the sheets, fluff & flip the pillows and put a throw on the end. My partner jokes that it’s like we’re living in an IKEA display room, but I love it. No matter how bad my day is I get to come back to a cosy bed.
Then, I take about 10-15mins to make the house nice. I open up all the blinds and let as much natural light in as possible. I pick up empty mugs and plates from around the house, throw things in the rubbish, and just generally straighten up the place. My home is where I work, so if things are overly messy, my day will feel messy. It also allows my mind to wake up!
Speaking of waking up, it’s time for a black coffee. I generally practice intermittent fasting (16:8 for all you fasters out there) so I don’t eat before noon, but I kept the coffee!
Once I sit down at my desk (usually at around 7.45-8am) all cylinders are firing. I’m most productive in the morning before lunch. So I tackle the big things first; analysis and complicated campaign tasks, big reports, strategies etc. Anything that I’m worried or stressed about also comes first. If I don’t get it out of the way, the whole day is stressful. But if I knock it over first I feel accomplished and on a roll.
I take lunch at about 12-12.30 each day. Lunch is the time where I switch off my brain, so even my meals aren’t complicated. They’re either leftovers, or an egg dish; whatever requires the least amount of effort and thought. Because I like to turn off my brain at lunch, I tend to watch 30mins of Netflix – light stuff or comedies only! Recent favourites include Schitt’s Creek, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, and Bojack Horseman.
Once I’m back after lunch, I usually have smaller or less complicated tasks ahead of me. I also like to reserve my phone calls for the afternoons too. Phone calls, depending on the subject matter, allow me to walk around a little bit while talking which keeps me active as my brain and energy start to fade.
Most days end for me at 3.30-4pm and I have my routine this way because it’s also when my brain starts running out of juice. I sign off from my computer, closing down all work-related windows, and I head out for a walk. Having a walk gets me outside in a bit of sunshine, but it also allows me to debrief the day to myself as I listen to music. The act of going for a walk also breaks up work time and home time for me too. Since isolating, walks outside have been more limited. But YouTube yoga and a cup of tea on my balcony also make great afternoon routines.
First thing I do when waking up is head straight downstairs to my coffee machine and breakfast. Then I’ll usually jump on the computer and check my personal emails, updates, etc. During this time, I’m also usually listening to a podcast about tech, football, or gaming.
Once I’ve finished with my own emails, I’ll start with my work emails. I always like to check my emails first because it allows me to pull tasks from them and set my day up. While I check my emails, I’ve also got my task list and calendar open for the day.
Once I’ve done my emails, I’ll start work around 9am. I usually work until around 10.30am then I get ready and head to the gym. I usually get home from the gym around 12pm, then I shower and have lunch.
Once I’ve finished that, I work until my tasks are done for the day.
My daily routine tends to depend on what kind of social plans I have that day or what I want to cook for dinner. Depending on this, I’ll probably start from any time between 7am-9am. Earlier if I want to finish early to get to a friend’s place, or later if I’ve been out for dinner the night before. I prefer the earlier starts, because it feels like I get so much more out of my day when I finish around 3pm.
I’ll usually use my lunch break to go to the gym, because it’s not as busy during the day. So, depending on when I get motivated to do that is when I’ll take my lunch. This also helps me to break up the day and get out of the house.
My days aren’t super structured, I just like to make sure I have enough time to get everything done and not be stressed about it. It’s really nice not having set hours like 9-5, because it takes a ton of stress off. If you’re more productive early in the morning, having the opportunity to start earlier is great.
Depending on the restrictions in different locations, some of these activities (e.g. going to a gym) might not be possible for you, but hopefully, you’ve found something that sparks an idea of what you can do with your time. Perhaps you can adapt some of these ideas into your own routine!
It’s okay if things are a bit unstructured for you right now, but don’t worry. You’ll find something that works for you!
You can find part 2 of our home routines here.
If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to reach out to us.