working week

Is it coming up to the weekend, is it the weekend, or have I missed the weekend? Am I the only one that temporarily forgets which day of the working week it is?

While in general terms the working population is now spilt into key and essential workers who are rushed off their feet and, we are all very grateful to them for their dedication and resilience they show daily, those that are on furlough, enjoying the good weather, and like myself, those that are working, but not quite at the same intensity as before Covid-19.

Now in my fifth week of working from home, I am reflecting on the elements of life, which I have adjusted to and surprisingly getting used to, which I might even miss as we come out the other end.

The start of the working day

Let’s start with how my morning routine has changed unrecognisably: before I would jump out of bed at 6:30 am depending on where I needed to be that day, quick breakfast and out the door, not really acknowledging anyone else in the house, let alone engaging in conversation.

As we all have an internal clock that is hard to adjust, I am still awake at 6:30 am, and now I roll out of bed to switch on the TV and listen to Susanna and Piers. I quite enjoy their debates with Andrew Pierce and Kevin Maguire, and at times I find myself tuning out and focusing on their home decoration. Does a backdrop of books or cupboard doors make you more or less intelligent? I hear that some presenters are now changing rooms in their house just to keep the viewer ratings high. Or I might even start the day with the Energy Effect, an online fitness class that wakes you up with the combination of loud music and the instructor shouting at you to do 8 more! Exercise in the morning is such hard work, yet meant to be good for you.

Breakfast now is an enjoyable time, with conversation only interrupted by a spoon full of muesli, which I am now actually tasting, although I’m not sure I like it – so bland!

Still in the office, for 8:30 to set my daily goals. My days seem to be back to back virtual meetings, coaching, or on my back reading – note to self, there must be a balance. On the occasional time I venture out, no worries about traffic, or delays, parking is so much easier and not at all a worry. No more parking on a double yellow to quickly run into the Post Office, in fact, I might take a chance tomorrow, just to raise the blood pressure!

Lunchtime for the first time

Pre-quarantine, lunch normally comprised of a quick sandwich and then back to work, but now I find time for a run. When you have the time, it is interesting what you can find in the fridge and how creative you can be! I think it is important to admit at this stage, my cooking is, at best, described as beige. It always includes a balance of the main components you would associate with a healthy diet, just does not necessarily look appealing on the plate, more for nutritional balance than taste. I must thank Lisa for the inventive, and appetising meals I am currently enjoying.

When does the working day finish?

Most of the time the working day seems to conclude at 5 pm just in time to hear the government briefing; it seems quite sad, yet compelling, to listen to the update. I often feel there is a business opportunity: why do so many journalists ask the same question framed slightly differently and expect a different answer, the latest being “when will we be out of lockdown?” instead of relying on the science, we could always ask Mystic Meg?

Confession time, magically, a glass of wine appears at the same time. Is 5 pm too early or too late for a glass of wine, and does it depend on which day of the week it is? What happens if you momentarily forget what day of the week it is?

Appreciate what you have?

I have concluded that a slower pace of life does not mean wasting time, it allows you to appreciate more of the elements that are consistently there, just not always noticed, and therefore missed. By taking the time to apricate what you have, your surroundings and notice the people around you more, has a positive and enjoyable effect on everyone.

This is not my life, but there are parts of it that I do like and will try to keep, let’s make the most of it, we will all be back on the treadmill soon, racing around at 100mph looking at what’s ahead of us, where we need to go and not what we have around us.

Stay safe, wash you hands and don’t touch your face.

 Paul.canning@gmdpeople.com

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