So my first attempt at working from home was, well, a little challenging.
When I made the decision to leave my job and take some time to pursue freelance writing , I knew there would inevitably be some freak outs along the way. So, a couple weeks ago, I started a little list in the notepad of my iPhone to save for future use and appropriately titled it the ‘Oh $hit I Quit My Job! Emergency Survival Kit.’ I wanted to be prepared with some ideas just in case, well, the $hit hit the fan.
Here’s the list:
1. Start listing positives. Whenever I’m in a negative state of mind, whether due to stress or any other reason, I find it always helps to start a running list of positives. My list of positives could include past or recent accomplishments, something in the future I’m looking forward to or even just small things I have to be grateful for in the moment. Sometimes focusing on a few positive things are all it takes to get my mental vibes flowing in the right direction.
2. Phone a friend. I am fortunate to have several wonderful friends who I can always count on to lift me up when I’m feeling down or doubting myself (such as Ari who, upon learning of my new venture, quickly offered to lend an ear for a freak-out fest ). I’m a very lucky girl!
3. Inspiration board, books, cards, etc. Since this is all still very new and I have no idea how long I’ll be working form home, I really didn’t take the time to set up a home office per se (it’s pretty much just my computer and I at the kitchen table for now). I am, however, keeping a few items close at hand including my inspiration board and a supportive birthday card from my parents to help give me a boost when I’m in need of a little pick-me up.
4. Peggy!! In case of dire emergency, my therapist is only a phone call away…
5. Breathe. This one’s pretty self explanatory: Breathe in, breathe out. Repeat.
I wasn’t quite sure what I hoped to accomplish today but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t going to live up to my expectations no matter what. After my morning run, and spending about triple the amount of time it usually takes me to crank out a morning blog post, it was pretty clear I was having a bit of a mental block. So when my friend Lauren sent me a text asking if I wanted to come to her 10:30 am yoga class I jumped at the chance. As it turned out, I was the only one who showed up so I was able to get a one-on-one session and pep talk from my good friend (Thanks, Lauren! ) I left feeling much more balanced and ready to tackle the day.
After yoga, I popped over to Whole Foods for a small green juice – and I mean small.
(Just look at the size of the cup compared to the straw). That little guy cost me $6.50! Needless to say, I won’t be making that a habit.
Since I was in the neighborhood, I also stopped at Trader Joe’s for some groceries I was planning to pick up later in the week. I managed to make it all the way through the check out without the one item I had actually come in for.
Good thing I realized it before I left the store – I’m on a major sunflower butter kick right now and I don’t know how I would have made it through the week without it.
By the time I got home, I was pretty much ready to gnaw my arm off so I made myself a quick omelette with one whole egg, two egg whites, mushrooms and onions.
Served up over a bed of mixed greens and a side of grapefruit, it made for a nice little lunch.
I managed to work through the rest of the afternoon and get quite a few things accomplished: finally got my health insurance in order and paid for (not totally work-related but definitely a necessity), organized my stash of magazines that I plan on pitching with article ideas (I’ve been collecting any magazine I come across for the past several weeks so it was time to get them all in one, tidy spot), reached out to a few old and new contacts inquiring about some freelance work and submitted an article idea to an online publication.
I’m not going to lie, it was a little tough. I can already tell this is going to be very different than what I’m used to. The writing part I know I can do, it’s all the other stuff like making contacts and ‘selling’ myself and my ideas that doesn’t really come as second nature to me. I’m trying not to be too hard on myself (as the firefighter kindly pointed out, it was only my first day on the job ), and I also know it will become easier and more natural in time. In the meantime, I’m reminding myself that every day is a new day.
Well, that’s it for today (I know, it’s plenty!) I’m off to my parents’ house for a little dinner and Dancing With The Stars. Hope you’re having a great night!
Question: What tips and tricks do you use to save yourself from an all out freak-out?