Today’s big idea is that even though working from home is, technically, work, there’s no law that says you can’t make it more fun to help avoid burnout. We have it in our head that work equals effort, which means hard, which means not fun. But you’re working from home. No one is observing you. You absolutely can, and absolutely should, find a way to enjoy it more. Because life is short. And let’s try and wring some good things out of this pandemic wherever we can.
Listen to the Podcast Here
Today’s tip actually comes from my daughter
Because let me tell you remote schooling was NOT fun or productive for her for most of 2020. Thankfully, she’s gotten in a good swing and is taking care of assignments right and left and also appears to be enjoying herself. She was telling me yesterday about all the assignments she’d done before 11 am and I asked her, what’s your secret?
She said for her it was all about two things–having a playlist, and rewarding herself with an episode of her favorite show once she’d finished something. And if you ask me, listening to music and rewarding yourself are pretty darn fun and a great way to avoid burnout.
She’s figured out how to up her enjoyment factor in a way that also helps her get her work done.
And if a 13 year old can figure this out. So can we all.
Some things I’ve done to make my work from home life more fun to avoid burnout is to schedule zoom work sessions with friends where we get on, say hi and catch up for 10 minutes, and then we set a timer and work for 45 minutes. Just hearing someone else’s fingers tip tip tapping on the keyboard will get you going. And getting a little friend time definitely brightens up a work day.
And sometimes if I’m doing something mindless and tedious, I’ll set myself up on the couch in the basement and watch something that’s not taxing while I work. The dog gets up there with me and it’s so cozy and dare I say, fun. Of course that doesn’t work for cognitive intensive work, so it’s not right for all the time, but saving it for rare times makes it feel even more special.
If you’re feeling burned out working from home, I’m guessing that it’s become pretty rote, and a little fun could really liven up your routine and your outlook.
Daily Tiny Assignment
Your tiny assignment is to think about what’s fun for you. Is it wearing something that makes you feel really fresh or really cozy. Maybe it’s a boa, or a pair of killer reading glasses. Is it turning on your essential oil diffuser or lighting a candle? Is it putting on a playlist? Or is it getting on a zoom with a friend? Or, something I just saw someone talking about on Twitter, eating a really garlicky lunch because, hey, you don’t have to worry about blowing your co-workers away with your garlic breath?
I KNOW there’s a way that you could spice up your daily work life. It’s probably been hiding in plain sight, or something you’ve considered doing but have waved it away. Hear me when I say this: you deserve to have fun! It is a loving, restorative, and uplifting thing to do. And if you can’t think of anything that’s fun, go watch the YouTube video of goats yelling like humans. You’re welcome.
Tune in tomorrow, when I’m sharing a mother’s guide to not hating your family when you’re all working remotely.