By now, we’ve been in work-from-home mode long enough for some bad habits to set in. I know I’m not the only one who has started to eat lunch in front of my computer! Last week, I STILL ate lunch in front of my computer… but not because I had too much to do. Instead, I ate lunch in front of my computer because I spent my lunch hour getting away from my desk and focusing on my physical and mental health.
Last week I committed to getting away from my desk for at least one hour each day. If I’m on your Instagram feed you’ll have already followed along, so I’ve included more great one-hour breaks for you to try at the end!
I started the week baking mini apple pies. It was rather ambitious considering I didn’t have enough time to bake them fully. BUT, this wasn’t bad news since the baking process was finished for dessert that night. Fresh-baked apple pies for dessert on a Monday night? Yes, please!
I am an “eyeball cooker”, meaning I eyeball ingredients most of the time. My mom is an AMAZING cook that takes this approach with most things, so I inherited this talent thanks to her. Fair warning, eyeballing works better with cooking than with baking… trust me on that one.
What I learned? I’ll roll out my pie crust thinner for next time.
I am a religious gym-goer because it gets my crazy out and settles me for the day. Even though I’m not new to lunch-hour workouts, I still made this one of my lunch-time adventures since it got me away from my desk and refreshed. FYI, workouts at my gym are limited to one hour to control building traffic due to COVID-19, and I work out with a mask on. Here’s Tuesdays upper body routine:
Workouts are great when you work from home because it releases stress, gives you more energy, and improves your mood – it’s the perfect recipe for relieving work-from-home fatigue.
Wednesday Walk With a Podcast
Those that have followed me for a while know that I am obsessed with podcasts. The rain held off so I went for a refreshing 45-minute walk while listening to the “Snapchat vs. Facebook” season of Wondery’s Business Wars podcast.
The walk split up my day nicely, and I felt zero work-from-home fatigue as a result. I tend to go on walks often – in the morning as part of my “fake commute” to set my mind up for the workday ahead, and in the evenings to free any extra energy I have before bed. 10/10 would recommend, especially with a good podcast!
Thursday Lunch With a Friend
I planned to have lunch over zoom with a girlfriend of mine, but we shifted to a lunch walk instead since (A) the whole point of this was to avoid desk fatigue, and (B) my friend needed to take her aussie shephard, Merlot, to blow off some steam. I absolutely adore Merlot, and you will too!
Catching up with a friend grounded me because it took my mind away from work and I got to focus on something entirely different. Now that the COVID-19 pandemic has us seeing each other less, phone call walks with friends has been a great way to stay connected.
Friday Car Oil Change
Ok, I admit, this doesn’t sound exciting. BUT. Getting an oil change got me out of the house, out of the neighborhood, and I got to take care of an errand I would’ve done on the weekend. I was also able to squeeze in about 25 minutes of reading time which is super rare for me unless I’m on transit. I’m still making my way through “Confessions of an Economic Hit Man” by John Perkins – an excellent read that gives a first-hand account of the background that led to some of the world’s political situations today. Heads up, I was reading a previous version of the book, so skip my version and pick this one up:
*POOF!* Now I had a free weekend with no errands, and I happened to finish my book by Sunday as well. I’ve noticed that working from home has been amazing for freeing up weekends since the short breaks I take are usually spent tending to house chores. Beauty!
Reflecting on my week
I’ll come out and say it: it was HARD to get away from my desk. I often find a good rhythm where I can keep working non-stop; however, I am tired by the end of the day if work straight through until dinner. Getting used to disconnecting is supposed to be hard because introducing a new, healthy habit is never as easy as it looks. The two main things I noticed this week were that I felt more resilient to work stress, and I had the patience to pick up a hobby in the evening. Great things!
Over the course of the week, I had some great suggestions come through my Instagram account. Some of the activities that @professionalwomanblog followers are doing are:
- Turn out the lights, light a candle, and do an hour of yoga
- Meal prep an elaborate recipe for dinner
- Pour a cup of tea, walk to the park, and read a book
- If you have a hammock, snuggle up in a blanket with a hot drink and a good book
- Pull out your craft supplies and make cards, sew new cushion covers, etc
- Put on a show and colour in an adult colouring book
- Start a painting and work on it each lunch break
- If you play music, get the stress out on whatever instrument you play
- Try a YouTube dance lesson