What a wild year this past month has been. Most of us are staying at home as much as possible to help slow the spread of the coronavirus (aka: COVID-19). There’s now a heated online debate among entrepreneurs and freelancers. Should you stay productive during this quarantine or should you just relax?
Let’s take a look at both sides. We’re also going to look at a third choice for you later in this blog post.
Keep That Same Energy: Stay Productive
Some entrepreneurs and business leaders are using this time to stay productive during this quarantine. Why not use this time to keep working on your business idea, especially if you enjoy the work and can still run your business from home?
Here are three tips for staying productive during this quarantine:
- Get ready.
It’s so tempting to work in your pajamas, now more than ever. But don’t underestimate how your clothes can make you feel prepared (or unprepared) to get some work done. Wake up, have breakfast, take a shower and get dressed. Comfortable shirts, sweaters, jeans and similar clothes are okay to wear while working.
- Choose your own office hours.
Decide which days of the week you want to work on your business. Plan how many hours you will work during these days. Also, decide what time of day (or evening) you want to work on your business. For example, some people feel most creative and productive during the mornings. Other people prefer to work during the afternoons or evenings.
- Keep three lists of three.
Try keeping three lists to stay productive during this quarantine. The first list is the three most important things you want to do today for your business. The second list includes three things you want to work on soon, but aren’t urgent. The third list is three things that you want to get done eventually.
Staying productive during this quarantine can be great. But what if you just want to relax?
Keep Calm: And Relax Instead
Some entrepreneurs and freelancers are taking this time to finally get some rest. They’re also pushing back on all the online posts and videos on how to stay productive during this quarantine, such as recipe challenges, workout videos, and courses on starting a business.
There are benefits to stepping back and slowing down a little.
- Get some sleep.
Now is a great time to figure out how much sleep you need to feel well rested and prepared to start a new day. Some people need only 6 or 7 hours of sleep to feel rested. Other people need 8 or 9 hours to feel re-energized.
- Take time to reflect.
Consider meditation or writing your thoughts in a journal. If you’re religious or believe in a higher power, you can also use this time to pray, read religious books, or check out blogs and podcasts related to your faith.
- Limit your time online.
Being online during quarantine can feel overwhelming. There’s the news, your weird cousin’s conspiracy theory tweets, celebrities doing live Instagram videos, and a bunch of other online discussions and debates.
Feel free to put down your phone, or close your laptop, for a while. Use that time to watch a movie. (You might want to skip “The Hunger Games” or any dystopian/end-of-the-world types of movies for now.)
So, you can stay busy or just rest. Still not sure what to do? There’s a third choice.
Keep Your Balance About Staying Productive During This Quarantine
You can balance staying productive during this quarantine and getting enough rest during this time. This will help you feel good about making some progress without feeling tired or burned out.
Here are some ways to stay balanced while staying at home.
- Take a break.
Planning to spend a few hours working on your business today? Great! Just be sure to schedule one or a few 15-30 minute breaks during this time. These breaks can be used to stretch, go for a short walk, grab a quick snack, watch a short funny video, or take a short nap.
- Make time to connect with people.
Running your own business can feel lonely, especially if you’re working from home. Take the time to thank people who are supporting you, including your parents, friends, and your customers. Connect online with friends you haven’t seen since the coronavirus quarantines started. Also, reach out to friends and family if you need help with your business or need help with coping with feeling stuck at home.
- Remember your “why”.
It’s common to ask yourself “Why am I even doing this?” while running a business, even when there’s not a quarantine. Take this time to think about what you enjoy about your business. Also, consider how your business helps people. This will keep you motivated to continue working, and to make any changes if needed.
Takeaway Points to Stay Productive During Quarantine
Avoiding the coronavirus is a very important part of staying healthy during this quarantine.
But there’s more to staying well during this time. You don’t have to choose between staying busy all the time or just binge-watching your days away.
When you’re working, you can:
- Start your days getting prepared to work
- Set your own work schedule
- Make to-do lists to help you stay focused.
Need to relax? Make time to:
- Limit your time online.
And don’t forget to balance work and relaxing.
- Taking breaks.
- Connect with others.
- Remember why you’re running a business.
This quarantine time means we are all in this together.
But there’s not one perfect way to spend this time that will work for everybody. Find a balance between running your business and resting that works best for you.
Stay healthy, stay productive during this quarantine, and take some time to rest.