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24 Apr, 2020

Unblurring the lines between work and home-life

Jacqueline Hurst is one of the UK’s leading Life Coaches and is also a specialist in Advanced Structured Hypnotherapy and a Master NLP Practitioner. She has worked with over 5,000 clients and is GQ Magazine’s resident therapist. Here Jacqueline outlines ways to stay positive in uncertain times and how to unblur the lines between work and home-life.

Work

Working from home used to be something we used to really look forward to. No public transport, no rush hour and no having to traipse all the way back home again once the day was done. We didn’t even have to get dressed!

And then overnight, just like that, the world is hit with an invisible virus where we are all sent home from our offices and Covid-19 has taken over. The world is on lockdown and Government has told us we must now ‘work from home’. Life as we know it has completely changed and our new workday has become something so different from anything we could have ever contemplated or literally believed could have ever happened. And yet here we are. Overnight our views on working from home have totally changed.

As you read this, most of us are in our homes 24/7 and many of us are juggling a lot more than just work. We have families, kids, other halves, older parents, food confusion and exercise limitation, so separating your work from your time ‘at home’ can feel confusing because the lines have become blurred.

As a life coach for over 15 years I wanted to step in and help you if you are feeling confused or anxious because there are lots of ways to handle this new reality. I want to help you unblur the lines and get back into some sort of norm. If we are having to sit this out for a few months we might as well do it in style, with positivity and perspective.

Here are my top tips on the how to…

1. Positivity is a choice. What you think about really, really matters. What you let into your brain really, really matters. Flooding your brain with the news 24/7 is not helpful, but 5 mins a day is. Flooding your brain with thoughts that don’t feel good is not helpful, but thoughts that do feel good, is. Your thoughts matter because what you think ultimately generates how you feel. If you want to feel calm, you need to think calming thoughts. If you want to feel peaceful you need to think peaceful thoughts. So, if you have thoughts that are not working for you, that are creating fear or anxiety, write them down, then take a look at them and ask yourself if you would say those things to a friend. Likely the response is a no. Then ask yourself ‘how can I think about this differently?’ challenge yourself to do that and see how when your thoughts change, you feel better.

2. Productivity is also a choice - set a schedule and set your work times. For example, have your breakfast, do your daily exercise and then get into your work mode. Work mode should ideally mean, a quiet space, where there is just you without interruption – if your other half is at home with you working from home too, I suggest separate workspaces i.e someone in the kitchen and someone in the lounge. It is imperative to set work times too so 9-1pm then 2-6pm you should be in your ‘work zone’ of the house. It is also important that anyone else in the house knows you are ‘at work’ and cannot be interrupted. Scheduling your time and creating a work zone produces productivity. Simple as that!

3. Get dressed as if you were going to leave your house. Staying in your tracksuit or your work out gear all day is not good for your mental health and does not help the separation in your mind between work and play.

4. Connect with others. Make at least one time in the day to connect with other people. You could have breakfast with your best friend over FaceTime, lunch with your parents or dinner with your work colleague. You could play monopoly after dinner over Zoom or do a House Party on the weekend with your friends. Make the most of the amazing technology of today to help you feel connected.

I want to remind you that when we cannot control the situation, we can only control how we think about it and so the power to do this and feel calm whilst you are doing this, is all in your hands.

Over to you x

Jacqueline Hurst is the UK’s leading Life Coach and is also a specialist in Advanced Structured Hypnotherapy and a Master NLP Practitioner. Jacqueline has over 15 years’ experience and has worked with over 5,000 clients. Jacqueline is GQ Magazine’s resident therapist and is regularly featured in the media as an expert in her field. Jacqueline is also the founder of The Life Class an online life coaching school. She works with clients 1:1 by phone, skype or in person at her office in Mayfair in London. Her websites can be found at www.jacquelinehurst.com and www.thelifeclass.com

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