How to Incorporate Mindfulness into Your Work From Home Space

How have the last few months been treating you in terms of work-life balance? Have you been feeling stressed, losing sleep, and struggling to draw the line between work and home time due to the mandatory work from home and Shelter-In-Place orders? Sister, you’re not alone.

I’m here to tell you that although work is important and productivity is a must, you don’t have to be productive 100% of the time while you work at home. It’s important to remember that while we are working from home we are still working in a crisis. Practicing self-care and mindfulness are vital for getting through this difficult time and it’s okay to rely on others for figuring out how to adapt to this “new normal”. 

That being said, as many Shelter-In-Place orders extend and businesses’ budgets tighten, many companies are offering permanent work from home positions for their employees. While some may enjoy working from home or not, everyone’s situation is different. Whether you are deciding to venture back into the office or hunker down at home for a while longer it’s important to approach this transition delicately and with your own mental wellness in mind. 

How to Incorporate Mindfulness into your Work from Home Space
*This is a guest post and all opinions are those of the author. This post may also contain affiliate and/or paid links. Rest assured that I only work with companies and individuals that I trust. While some of those companies and individuals may work in the medical field, this post is not intended to be a substitution for medical advice. Always speak to your doctor if you have concerns about your mental or physical health.
How to Incorporate Mindfulness into your Work from Home Space

To aid in this transition, I’ve rounded up a few wellness strategies from professional “zen artists” who understand the importance of adding wellness to your workspace and work routine. These professionals include organizational experts, wellness architects (yes, that’s a thing), naturopathists and holistic coaches. With these simple strategies in mind, you can take ownership back over your current or future work set-up and ensure your mental and physical health isn’t being side-stepped. Keep reading for wellness strategies to incorporate into your workspace. 

Optimize Your Space for Comfort

While your home or office may not be equipped with ergonomic furniture, that doesn’t mean you have to suffice with an uncomfortable workspace. Ask your employer if you can take office furniture home or “check-out” devices for optimal use at home. While not everyone works the same way, M Moser Associates, Global Design and Architecture Firm, offered a few best practices on this topic. They said, “To create a comfortable and positive work from home space, people need to feel empowered to discover aspects that create comfort and enhance mood and performance in their own homes.” 

They also recommended creating a minimum of three high-performance work environments. This, they say has proven to support a range of benefits including “boosting motivation through freedom of choice, creating mood-enhancing playfulness, stimulating the brain through micro-movements, and providing head space for new ways of thinking.”

.

Incorporate Mindfulness Into Your Routine

The next step to incorporating wellness into your workspace is by adding mindfulness into your routine. This can be done by setting strategic intentions before, during, and after your workday. Shawn Johal, Entrepreneur & Business Growth Coach at Elevation Coaching emphasized the importance of taking mindfulness breaks as you may feel that working from home means staring at your computer and phone screens more often. He says to “take purposeful breaks for mindful moments away from the screen. Breathe, meditate, and take a 5-minute walk outside every hour. Your mental health will be in better shape, your family will see you as calmer, and your work will be accomplished with more success.”

Meditation Tips for People Who Hate to Meditate
.

Communicate Boundaries and Set Standards in Your Work Place

As millions of employees headed home at the start of the pandemic so did millions of students and family members. You are most likely experiencing challenges you never thought you would and are being asked to set unfamiliar boundaries with family members and roommates. 

To remedy this, business expert Shawn Johal also said to create boundaries for work time. He said to “communicate to your loved ones how your day is scheduled – maybe even give them a copy of your schedule.” This will give you more time to spend with them and you can incorporate walks, breaks, and meals to be spent together.

Level-Up Self-Care and Level-Down Self Destruction

There are many ways to prioritize self-care during quarantine and it seems like that’s all anyone is talking about. However what is less commonly discussed, but just as important is practicing self-care at work. While we commonly associate lighting candles and using essential oils for times of relaxation, their use can have many impacts on improving your workspace and make it more enjoyable.

Naturopathic Milana Perepyolkina recommends incorporating essential oils into your work routine due to its relaxing benefits for the body and mind. Incorporate lavender to relax the mind, bergamot to lift your mood and peppermint to increase energy and mental activity. Whatever self-care activities you incorporate into your work routine, use mantras to limit negative self-talk and spirals of anxiety that can so easily entrap us during the workday.

How to NOT feel isolation while in self isolation
.

I hope this piece has inspired you to add some moments of wellness to your work routine and encouraged you to prioritize your mental health during the turbulent time. For more inspiration and ideas on adding wellness to your workspace check out the infographic below with strategies to “zen” your workspace.

Wellness Strategies Infographic
Credit: https://www.ftd.com/blog/share/zen-your-work-from-home-space

Author Bio

Stacy Walden is a writer from sunny San Diego. She enjoys covering topics around productivity and wellness in the workplace. When she’s not writing she likes spending time with her family and friends and traveling to new places abroad.

20 Awesome Etsy Finds That Will Get You Through Quarantine

Etsy is a way to support small business owners during the pandemic.

With the coronavirus global pandemic closing the doors of many businesses, which ones will suffer the most?  The larger, corporate companies may make it through this with minimal impact, but the small business owners are at the biggest risk of losing it all.  Etsy is made up of independent sellers and small business owners from around the world, and they also offer the largest collection of unique and handmade items.  Purchasing one of these Etsy finds is the easiest and most fun way to #StandwithSmall.

Consider joining the #StandwithSmall movement and check out some of these useful Etsy finds.
20 Awesome Etsy Finds That Will Get You Through Quarantine
*This post contains affiliate and/or paid links which means that if you click on one of these links and buy a product, I may earn a small commission at no additional cost to you. Rest assured that I only recommend products that I love from companies that I trust. Furthermore, I am not a medical professional and nothing in this post should be taken as medical advice. I am simply a mother who has been there and lived to tell the tale.
DIY Craft Kits - Etsy Finds 20 Awesome Etsy Finds That Will Get You Through Quarantine
Work From Home Supplies - Etsy Finds

Etsy Finds For Your Self Care Routine

Stuck at home during quarantine?  What better time to catch up on self care.  These Etsy finds make it easy to focus on you.  Put in the effort during quarantine and come out of the pandemic glowing and refreshed!

Self Care Kit - Stresscase Shop
StresscaseShop on Etsy

A Customized Self Care BoxEach purchase is curated based on your specific needs and includes things like organic teas, natural beauty products, herbs and even healing crystals.

Hair Growth Kit - NaturalSisters
NaturalSisters on Etsy

Hair Growth Products. Spend your self isolation growing out long, luscious locks.  Since you’ve got some time off from constant styling, now is the perfect time to focus on hair health.  

Dry Brushing Kit
BIRCHROSEandCO on Etsy

A Dry Brushing Set.  Dry brushing is a technique that helps exfoliate the skin as well as massage the lymphatic system for better physical and mental health.  This set comes complete with a brush and oil, perfect for your daily self care ritual. 

Hammock Chair
HammocksNica on Etsy

A Relaxing Hammock.  Hang it outside or in and it’s sure to become your favorite place to sit and relax.  Use it while meditating, watching the kids play or while reading a good book. 

Etsy Finds For Your Home Office

As a blogger, I’m used to working at home, but not everyone else is.  It can take some adjustments to find the right home office space.  Whether you need some privacy for conference calls or are struggling to make a homeschooling schedule, these Etsy finds might be able to help. 

Work from home door signs
WoodFinds on Etsy

Work From Home Door Signs. What’s worse than having your kids run into the room while you’re on a video call?  Or having to put someone on hold to answer the doorbell?  These customizable wood door signs might be just what you need. 

Honeycomb Pen Holder
DimensionsonDemand on Etsy

A Honeycomb Shaped Pen Holder. Can’t keep track of all your office supplies?  This 3D printed honeycomb desk organizer has room for all the various supplies you need for homeschooling or working from home.

A Chalkboard Command Center.  
CalendarGirlCompany on Etsy

A Central Command Center.  You might think there’s less to write on your calendar these days.  But you can use this calendar to keep track of your homeschooling assignments, work meetings or conference calls, social phone calls and meal planning so you can limit your shopping trips. 

Etsy Finds For Reading and Writing

Reading and writing are important things we should do everyday while stuck inside the house.  Quarantine is a good time to finally finish your favorite book.  And everyone should be keeping a journal of this historical pandemic so that we never, ever forget. 

A Leather Bookmark.   
OxandPine on Etsy

A Leather Bookmark.  Etsy actually has a huge assortment of bookmarks. Many people have made the switch to online or electronic reading, but nothing beats curling up with a good book and a fancy bookmark. 

A Leather Journal.
ForestNine on Etsy

An Old World Style Journal. I think this leather journal is just perfect for detailing all your pandemic chronicles.  Imagine being able to pass this down to your kids or grandchildren one day? There’s something romantic and adventurous about living through this historical time period. 

A Calligraphy Kit.  
AngeliqueInk on Etsy

A Calligraphy Kit. Learning a new skill is great for our mental health and will keep you distracted while bored at home. Calligraphy is all the rage right now, despite it’s ancient background. 

Etsy Finds For Organizing Your Kitchen

It’s not uncommon for those in quarantine to spend a lot more time in the kitchen.  Whether you’re expanding your cooking skills, cleaning and decluttering or baking bread, these Etsy finds are sure to help out!

A Spice Rack and Jars 
DIYProjectsShop on Etsy

A Spice Rack and Jars. This rustic, reclaimed wood spice rack comes with matching glass jars so you can keep all your spices at hand and on display while you try out those new recipes. 

Pantry Labels 
madeupbymandy on Etsy 

Pantry Labels. While you’re busy organizing your pantry, get a set of matching labels to give it a professional look. And hopefully, your pantry will stay clean after quarantine is over.

Beeswax Food Wraps.  
AlisaYao on Etsy

Beeswax Food Wraps. If you’ve been meaning to start eliminating disposable plastic in your kitchen, quarantine is the right time to start.  It’s healthier for you and for the environment, plus it will save you money and is one less thing you need to stock up on. 

Etsy Finds To Keep You Busy

Etsy is one of the best places to find arts and craft supplies, as well as handmade items.  Whether you want to start crafting, are looking for ways to incorporate art therapy into your life, or just need to restock some of your supplies, consider supporting a small business on Etsy.  

A DIY Organic Soap Kit
Arterno on Etsy

A DIY Organic Soap Kit. Make your own soap at home, and don’t worry about the stores being out of stock.  You can make handwashing more enjoyable with beautiful organic, hand made soaps.  Or craft them as a gift for a healthcare or front line worker in your life. 

A Weaving Loom Kit.
handiworkyourlove on Etsy

A Weaving Loom Kit. Weaving, knitting, crochet, macrame… any of these crafts are great for your fine motor skills and offer a distraction from anxious thoughts.  Try utilizing one of these crafts while meditating! 

An Embroidery Kit
KirikiPress on Etsy

An Embroidery Kit. Make an adorable little critter with these embroidery starter kit.  Another way to keep busy and learn a new skill.  

Etsy Finds For Your Windows

Have you heard of the Hearts in the Window movement?  People everywhere are decorating their windows to brighten their neighborhoods and send messages of hope.  Etsy is a great place to find unique and beautiful decorations for your window so that you can spread joy in your own community.

Stained Glass Heart Suncatcher
enbleuetverre on Etsy

A Heart Suncatcher.  This stained glass art piece resembles a dream catcher mobile and would look stunning displayed in your sunniest window!

Rainbow Heart Suncatcher.
ZorkaVenera on Etsy

A Rainbow Heart. I also love this colorful geometric heart.  I’m sure when the sun comes through this stained glass heart, the entire house is filled with a flurry of color! This seller also makes them in other styles, including gorgeous mandala designs.

Window Clings.  
WindowGemStudio on Etsy

Window Clings. Another great option to decorate your windows is by using decals and clings. These simply stick onto your window and also reflect light through them for a rainbow effect when the sun shines through.  Bonus – they work to deter birds from flying into your windows!  

And finally, if you absolutely must leave the house during the pandemic, make sure you’re equipped with a proper face mask.
Face Mask with filter pocket.
YourCuteWallz on Etsy

Face Mask with filter pocket. Several Etsy shops have started making and selling face masks to keep up with the growing demand.    You can find some that are made of organic cotton, have a filter pocket, or with different designs and ear straps, which tend to make wearing them more comfortable.  (But keep in mind that nothing sold on Etsy is considered medical-grade.) 


These Etsy finds are just a few suggestions of the millions of products you can get to make your quarantine more enjoyable.  And by making a purchase on Etsy, you can rest assured that you’re supporting a struggling independent seller or small business owner through this time of financial uncertainty. For postpartum depression printables, don’t forget to check out our own Etsy shop @RuninTrianglesBlog

Remember to #StandwithSmall and #StaySafe!
Etsy #StandwithSmall
.

How To NOT Feel Isolated While in Self Isolation

Self isolation is the recommended course of action for many during the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak.

Those who have recently traveled, have come in contact with someone with COVID-19, or who are sick are putting themselves into self isolation.  This basically means to quarantine yourself within your home for two weeks.  And further more, social distancing has us all keeping away from friends and public places.  With all of this isolation and anxiety, how does a person avoid actually feeling isolated?  For moms with mental health issues, isolation can actually make symptoms of depression and anxiety worse, so it’s important to have some ways to manage the loneliness. 

During self isolation, try some of these tips to avoid feeling lonely.
How to NOT feel isolation while in self isolation
*This post contains affiliate and/or paid links which means that if you click on one of these links and buy a product, I may earn a small commission at no additional cost to you. Rest assured that I only recommend products that I love from companies that I trust. Furthermore, I am not a medical professional and nothing in this post should be taken as medical advice. I am simply a mother who has been there and lived to tell the tale.
How to NOT feel isolation while in self isolation

Most people, especially moms, will not actually be alone during their self isolation or social distancing.  Spouses and children will likely be in isolation with them.  It’s hard to say whether this makes it better or worse for a woman with postpartum depression or anxiety.  Having the family around 24/7 might become overwhelming very quickly.  

While it’s great to embrace this gift of family time, make sure that each person is also getting enough alone time to themselves each day.  This could be quiet reading or doing a quiet activity all in one room, or have everyone separate into different rooms for an hour or two each day.  This will surely benefit everyone’s mental health during the isolation period.

If the entire family is beginning to feel isolated from the outside world, then consider some of these options.

Make a Connection

Even though we can’t go out and socialize with our friends right now, we can still make connections with others.  We need to stick together, especially during these uncertain times. This is something we should be doing daily or at least a few times a week in order to maintain our mental health.

.

Phone a friend or family member. Simply talking to another human being helps you avoid isolation.

Video chat with a friend or family member.  It helps to see another familiar face from time to time, and not just hear their voice.  This is also a great option for younger kids.

Write a letter to someone.  It doesn’t even have to be someone you know.  Consider writing letters with your kids to senior’s homes, hospitals, government offices, army bases, etc.  It would make someone’s day.

Write an email to someone.  Same as above, but send it online instead.  You can find e-mail addresses for most places on their websites.  Let your favorite local shop know how much you miss their store/business while it’s closed, and can’t wait to be back there again. 

Read a book or watch a movie.  Going on adventures with the characters in a book or a movie is another way to help you feel less lonely and isolated.  Now is a great time to start binge watching that TV series you’ve been wanting to start.

Adopt or foster a pet. If you’re going to be locked up inside the house for weeks anyway, why not foster a pet to keep you company?  You could all benefit from the company during this anxious time.

Find a Distraction

Don’t count the days of self isolation on a calendar, find a way to pass the time.  Keeping the mind distracted is a great way to avoid things like intrusive or anxious thoughts while you are quarantined at home. 

20 Awesome Etsy Finds That Will Get You Through Quarantine
.

Cook or Bake.  Don’t do it with the intention of “getting dinner on the table” as that will likely stress you out even more. Spend a day cooking some homemade soup or baking fresh bread or muffins with the kids.  Take your time and don’t worry about the mess. 

Clean.  Self isolation is the perfect time to clean out that closet you’ve been avoiding for months.  Start your spring cleaning early and tackle on the big messes that you never have time for. Decluttering is also a great way to maintain your mental health. 

Craft.  You can find hundreds of crafts you can do with the kids on Pinterest.  Or maybe you’d rather do something just for you?

Learn something new.  Nothing keeps the brain busier than learning. If you’re planning on homeschooling the kids, that will keep all of your brains busy.  Trying to pick up a new skill?  Now is the perfect chance to focus on it undisturbed for weeks!  Interested in knitting? Check out Love Crafts for everything you need including free PDF patterns! 

Leave the House

If you’re in self isolation or practicing social distancing, you should be avoiding other people and public places.  But that doesn’t mean you have to be locked up within the walls of your house.  There are still several ways that you can safely leave the house in order to avoid complete isolation.

25 Easy Outdoor Self Care Ideas
.

Spend time in your own backyard.  Good weather or not, spending some time each day in your own backyard is a great way to get some fresh air and sunshine.

Walk around the neighborhood.  You can also go for a walk in your own neighborhood, especially on a sunny day.  The natural Vitamin D not only helps to boost your mood, but the coronavirus doesn’t survive long in the sun. 

Go for a drive.  Why not pack the kids into the minivan and go for a drive in the country?  See if you can spot any wildlife or signs of spring.  Take photos along the way and compile an album.  Stop for a picnic lunch on the side of the road and play some fun family car games. 

Work on Yourself

Having weeks of undisturbed time at home means you finally have the chance to focus on yourself.  This global pandemic is going to change our entire world in ways we never imagined.  Let’s begin to prepare for the aftermath of it by using our self-isolation time to reflect on our lives. 

100 Self Care Ideas that are Social Distancing Approved
.

Exercise. There’s no better way to avoid stress, anxiety, depression and isolation than to exercise daily.  Exercise is so important for both our physical and mental health.  You don’t need a home gym, either.  Watch yoga videos on YouTube or turn on some music and dance!

Read self help books. Maybe you’ll actually finish some of those books that you’ve been saving for when you have time.  Or try listening to some inspirational podcasts.

Try cognitive behavior therapy. If you’ve been putting off therapy because of a lack of time, self isolation is the perfect time to try online therapy. By completing an online therapy course, you can emerge from self-isolation with better tools to help you be successful in life. 

Meditate. There are several different ways to meditate, even if you’re not a fan of it.  Download a guided meditation app or simply spend time being mindful and grateful. Practice deep breathing and stretching for optimal health.  Turn on an essential oil diffuser and listen to some soothing meditation music. 

Focus on the positive. Self isolation is not the ideal situation for everyone. You may be worried about your job and bills and having enough food.  Instead, try to find something positive to focus on each day and write it down.  At the end of this quarantine, you can look back at this time and feel the happy moments instead of the negative ones. 

Make plans for the future.  Thinking about the future is a great way to avoid isolation and anxiety about the coronavirus. Sit down as a family and decide what things you’d like to do when this is all over.  Maybe you’ve learned to live with less or have realized where your true priorities are.  This is the time to set goals and make plans for the rest of this year.