I’m a girl that has worked at home completely alone in my little studio for more than two years now. I run an online sandal business www.ankalia.com and I find that I’m quite used to being alone all day with zero face-to-face contact and only communicating by email, text and social media.
Image: in my home studio making my Meghan sandals in gold leather with gold Swarovski crystals
Now, that so many people are #workingfromhome during Coronavirus, I thought I’d share with you my tips to help you with this new mode of work.
Image: home studio life wearing my Pearl sandals and making my Sylvia design
Work Hours and Routine
I find that it’s very easy to put things off and potter around in the house in my nightie, so I set my alarm and get up at a normal time, I avoid grabbing my phone or laptop whilst still in bed and I set my alarm for 9am every day. With the 9am alarm, it works really well. It makes me get a definite and dedicated start to work. I also make sure I keep working all day until at least 4pm, after which I’ll get outdoors for sunshine and fresh air.
Image: home studio life making my Lara sandals
Create a Dedicated Work Space or Work Area
Definitely do not sit on the couch or work from a laptop in bed. It’s really bad for for your neck and back. Give yourself a dedicated workspace clear from any personal clutter that might be distracting and ensure you have a chair with good back support.
Image: home studio life making my Donatella sandals
Initially there were days when I started work in my nightie and it was only when it was time to go to the post office that I actually put on some proper clothes. Seriously, make sure you shower and put on proper clothes ever day otherwise you’ll start to feel lethargic and possibly like a bit of a slob. You don’t have to wear your usual work clothes but do shower and put on ’proper’ clothes.
I think if you have other people at home with you during our #workfromhome time, I think it’s important that you agree on some boundaries about time, coffee and lunch breaks, non-essential interruptions and dedicated work spaces.
Image:happy in my home studio wearing my Zahara sandals
Natural light certainly ensures a happier mindset so try to set yourself up near a window. If you only have artificial light then make sure you get up and go outside at least a couple of times during the day.
Image: happy home studio life wearing my Charlie sandals
By this I mean keep work and home life separate. Make sure you put your work away out of sight when the day is done. That way, you won’t be as likely to think about when you’re trying to relax and have family or ‘me’ time.
To avoid feeling lonely and to keep up with what’s happening in the outside world, I do put the TV on and watch the news whilst having lunch. Most afternoons I listen to talk-back radio whilst working and if I really need conversation, I make sure I get on the phone to friends and family for a chat, whilst I’m out walking.
Walk and Go Outside
We all know that sitting all day is not good for us and that we need to stand up and move around at intervals throughout the day. The fact that working at home we don’t really get to move around at all makes “moving breaks” all the more important. I find that walking from my studio to the kitchen just isn’t enough. I make sure I go outside several times throughout the day, often it’s just a quick 5- or 10-minute walk around the block. Those little walks relieve any back pain I might have and that little bit of sunshine on my face gives me those vitamin D happy vibes.
Image: my famous pink wall at my home studio wearing my pink Valentina sandals
Just remember, that now during this Coronavirus pandemic, it’s a privilege to be able to #stayhome or #workfromhome. I’m also finding that it’s giving me a whole new appreciation of my home, rather than always looking for outside stimulation. I’m actually really enjoying this quiet and unusual time. I hope we all come out the other side as better people.
Image: me Cheryl Botha of Ankalia Sandals
If you want to know more about what I do check out the Our Story page on www.ankalia.com
Lots of love,