Day 1: Awesome! Office space at home is cleaned up, my pens, notebook, computer and screens are all lined up neatly. Zoom and team meetings all sorted. Kids and home schooling schedule sorted. All systems are ready to go!
Day 10: I am enjoying the daily zoom meetings with the team, however the phone won’t stop ringing. Everyone is worried about what will happen. There are so many unknowns and the Government keeps changing the rules which is creating so much uncertainty in the business world.
Day 20: Phone is still ringing off the hook. We continue to monitor the ever changing JobKeeper rules so that we can help our clients. Home schooling is working well for the first 2 hours of the day, but then the kids are bored
Day 30: My washing is totally up to date. I am worried about some of my clients and the increasing government shutdowns
Day 35:  Phone still ringing, work is mounting up, team working extremely hard keeping up to date with Government stimulus packages. Still trying to stay active. The highlight of the day is taking a break from work and home schooling and walking to our local café with the kids and dog.
Day 40:  I was about to call a client back today but realised it was Sunday! The separation between week days and weekends, work and home life is starting to blur.
Day 45: Lots going on, between the ever changing COVID-19 situation, changing legislation around JobKeeper, dealing with the ever mounting daily workload, helping clients and trying to keep the children educated when all they really want to do is play Fortnite on the Xbox. Not sleeping as much and my diet consists of whatever I feel like eating – which is lots of chocolate!
Day 60:  Really look forward to our daily zoom meetings with the team. The boys from the office are getting hairier and scruffier by the day. The team are missing each other and we are coming up with ways to stay engaged and connected.
Day 70:  The dog doesn’t want to go for walks anymore. Home schooling… what home schooling? Hey at least the kids are alive, I chuck them food from time to time in between work.

Yep life in lockdown definitely has its ups and downs, but one thing I have realised is your experience of it can
largely be affected by your state of mind. Your state of mind depends on your mental health and resilience in
the face of uncertainty.

Ok, I am an accountant after all, so let me bullet point some of my key learnings:

  1. Self-care – Self-care is NOT overrated!! The key lesson I have learned in lockdown both in business and
    personally, is how important it is to take care of yourself. The old analogy of putting your own oxygen
    mask on first before helping others really rang true. If you are not in a positive and energised state, how
    can you help those around you? Do more of what makes you happy – get some daily sunlight, move,
    meditate, eat food that nourishes your body (but sometimes its also OK to also eat food that nourishes
    your soul – hello that piece of chocolate!).
  2. Learn to love change – So much in the world has changed in such a small amount of time. The world is
    very different. We now have before COVID-19 and after COVID-19. Embrace new technology. Take the
    time to learn new things. See challenges as opportunities to grow. I think of the zoom meetings I have
    now with work and how COVID-19 has seemed to humanise those interactions so much more. Cat walking
    past on screen? No worries! Dog barking? Totally OK.
  3. Communicate openly – We had a number of zoom meetings with the team where we communicated very
    openly about how everyone was feeling and where we were at with the state of things both within the
    business and personally. It helped us all to connect and gain some certainty in the face of uncertainty.
    Deep and real communication really does lead to connectivity, but it takes courage and honesty.
  4. Conscious transition – Don’t let go of routine. Mindfully transition between the start and end of your
    work day to consciously separate out the time between work and personal time. For example, set an
    alarm to get up, shower and list your top three work priorities to signal the start of your work day. Find an
    activity to signal the end of your workday and beginning of your personal time. This might include going
    for a walk or bike ride, actively engaging with your family members at home or a friend on the phone, or
    activate your out of office message. Do not check emails on your phone before you go to sleep. Start your
    weekends with something that gives you joy. Mine is a long walk along the water and a good coffee.

Most importantly, however cliched, we really are all in this together. Everyone on the whole entire planet is
feeling the effects of the pandemic in their own way. Reach out to your friends, family and members of the
community on a daily basis. Be sure to take time each day, no matter how small, to do something to take care
of yourself.

If you or someone you know needs help, reach out – Beyond Blue is just one of the amazing organisations that
are there to support you. Here is a link to a great article on their website about how mindfulness can help:

Take care
#weareallinthistogether #youarenotalone #conversationstoconnec