In the eternally wise words of The Fresh Prince of Bel Air… “Now this is a story all about how my life got flipped-turned upside down.” (Thank you https://www.azlyrics.com/)
There is no other way to say this than that we are living in strange and challenging times. The COVID-19 virus, from the professional perspective, means that many of you out there may be working from home, maybe for the first time in your career.
Everyone thinks that remote working is this enviable situation. But those of us who do it regularly know that while the commute is great, there are several challenges to face.
And for those of us who are now working remotely AND homeschooling kids, well, it’s just that much more oh so special and EXTRA.
If you are sensing some sarcasm on my part, you would be correct. I knew I never wanted to home school for many reasons, and those reasons make themselves evident to me 89 times before 9 AM each day.
But I have no choice in this matter, and neither do you. So, let’s all try to make lemons out of lemonade and get through this.
Schedule. For the work they must do, for the work you must do, and even who needs access to which devices. We are going to start morning meetings to talk about assignments, calls, virtual meetings, and space usage. Who needs the office, who needs a computer or tablet for work, lessons, and what about recess?
GET OUTSIDE. This should speak for itself, but with parks and playgrounds closed, this presents additional challenges. We’ve done some driving around, some hikes in the woods, and lots of playing in the cul de sac. Fresh air. You need it. They need it. Get it.
Lower your expectations. Now is not the time to demand a clean house, perfectly behaved children, and to be setting records for performance at work or in your relationships. Everything is strained right now. You might feel like you’re missing a lot, and you would be right. We all are. So just sit with that feeling and be OK with that feeling. Truth is, you truly don’t have much control over this.
Make sure your colleagues understand your circumstances. If you have kids at home that are of a certain age, they might make noise even if you have asked them not to. Make sure the people on your calls know that. The one thing we don’t need with all the added stress and domestic burden is to feel bad that our kids are making noise.
Make time for relaxation – breathe in, breathe out. Repeat several times a day.
Stay healthy: Fruits, vegetables, water – you know this, but try to eat at regular times and limit the stress snacking and extra food that is probably available to you because of KIDS.
Meal Plan. Any opportunity you can take advantage of to remove decisions and guesswork is your friend right now. I have a weeks’ worth of breakfasts, lunches, and dinners posted on my refrigerator so that it’s one less thing to panic about and be caught unprepared for.
This is your new normal. And it will change damn near every day. But you are strong enough, smart enough, and gosh darn it people like you. You got this.
As a sales and marketing coach and consultant at Success In Print, Kelly Mallozzi advocates for graphic arts companies to start a revolution and fight to keep print relevant. She may be irreverent, but what she lacks in convention, she makes up for in smart-assery.
Listen to Kelly’s Podcasts From The Printerverse: Achieving Success In Print and Sales with Kelly Mallozzi / Strategies for Sales Success with Bill Farquharson and Kelly Mallozzi
Check out her book, co-authored by Bill Farquharson: Who’s Making Money at Digital/Inkjet Printing…and How