In addition to feeling the stresses of what is happening in the world around us, many of us are having to adjust being cut off from our normal lives and important people. Part of our new normal is adjusting to spending a large portion of our time at home, working. As an entrepreneur, when I was just getting started, I spent a lot of time working from home, in addition to working alone. Now that I have an awesome team kicking butt together at the shop and in the blend lab, I still occasionally find myself working from home for various reasons. I wanted to share what I've learned in the few years I spent in my daily grind at home to help those new to this.
Find the spot that works best for you.
So my best spot for working from home is actually on my bed. I know, this is terrible for my posture, and I'm sure most sleep experts would be appalled, however this just happens to be the best spot for me. I put some good support pillows behind me, get my laptop fired up, spread out all my stuff (lots of room on a bed for notebooks, calendar, papers, and books), set my favorite cuppa on my nightstand in arms reach, and my cat has his spot (gotta have room for your pet or they have a tendency to wreck work things and productivity). I do believe this is a very personal thing - depends on you and what kind of work you do.
Natural light if you can.
My bedroom also happens to be the place that has the most natural light in the apartment, which I've found is important. The more light the better. Keeps me feeling positive and keeps me awake—along with that cup of tea, of course. If I could I'd work outside on the ground for a bit with spring here, but sadly allergies do not agree with this sort of relocation.
Get a work playlist.
I've found there is something very powerful about the right music when working. I tend to use the same 1-2 playlists every time. I'm a fan of Spotify's Morning Acoustic and Afternoon Acoustic. My body and mind just know that it's time to work and somehow it just makes me way more productive. I get in the zone and it's hard to pull me out. I'm sure there's some kind of scientific reasoning behind this, but all I know is it works.
Schedule in down time.
Don't forget to eat, drink water, and re-up your tea. Don't become a zombie. Some sort of interaction with the world is good! Check your social media feeds, text or call someone, and say hello to your pet. A bit of meditation, yoga, or working out is always good to get the stress out, get the blood moving, and get the brain clear and ready for new problems to solve. Alarms on your phone are a great way to make sure you take necessary mental breaks.
Time block goals.
Speaking of alarms, I set a lot of alarms in my life—to remember things like payroll, workouts, bedtime... and also to schedule out my day. I have a long ongoing list of all the things I need to do, categorized under different goals or departments. I figure out what needs to get done today, and then schedule it all into my calendar for the day. Yup, I use a paper calendar. Then I set my alarms as needed. I find this really helps me move the needle and keep me focused. Knowing I'm on a deadline with my alarm basically forces me to focus and get it done.
Get the worst done first.
This is one everyone will tell you. Get the hardest stuff and the stuff you really don't feel like doing done first. I'm freshest at the beginning of the day. I also start making excuses the more the day goes on as I get tired—eh I'll just do this piece and I'll do this other piece tomorrow. No. Just get it done first and get it out of the way.
Tea to fuel your day.
Obviously. 😉 But seriously, tea is the key to my day. I love a good espresso, but when it comes to fueling my work day, tea is the only way. The caffeine acts differently than coffee, keeping me calm and focused. Coffee just jacks me up and then shoots me straight down. The high acidity also doesn't agree so much with my stomach. There are so many different tea options available—did you know we have over 90 different teas and tisanes at Tea Sip? It never gets old because there's always something for what I'm craving—fruity, spiced, sweet, earthy, grassy... caffeine or no caffeine. The list could go on! Tea helps keep the day, my body and my mind, fresh and fueled. Here are some of my current caffeinated faves:
Coffee lovers, take note! This blend has a good flavor profile for you with it's earthy, raw chocolaty-ness. I've been diggin' it as a latte with vanilla soy milk.
For those familiar with the powerhouse caffeinated herb Guayusa, you will love this punchy cup. Also a fave with the Tea Sip team when they're draggin'.
Love a little Texan caffeinated yaupon in this refreshing blend of lemon, cinnamon, and mint flavors. I love it iced in the afternoon!
Y'all, if you're feeling old school it doesn't get much better then a classic English breakfast blend with a splash of milk and honey. I never get tired of this one.
A green spin on the black chai classic. A little milder then traditional chai, but a good balance of spices to pep me up. I always transition to this chai in the hotter months. It's great hot and iced!
Ready to jump into that work from home schedule? What are your favorite workin' teas or tisanes?