One issue many people working from home bring up is that it seems like the days are blending in. Nowadays, people perceive me as a very organized person. Well, let me tell you how it used to be 20 years ago.
Between 2000 and early 2002 I was a mess. I was on one of my cycles of working as an indepedent consultant, mostly working from home. I had no discipline of where work should start or end. I’d wake up mid-afternoon on a Monday, start working earlier that evening, go non-stop for 20 hours, eat a huge dish of lasagna at 4am on Wednesday, work for another 10 hours or so, and then collapse sometime Wednesday mid-afternoon. I’d sleep for 10 or 12 hours, and then start over. That would continue through the weekend.
In those days, my notion of time was really out of whack. I’m very glad that those days are gone, thanks to the lifestyle I chose to have (which I keep refining as we speak) and the productivity tips I’ve learned along the way.
Here’s one trick I’ve been using to prevent my days from blending in again:
Every morning, I sit down and meditate. Before I start, I ask myself: “what day of the week is today?”. If I’m comfortable with my answer, then I ask “What day of the month is it?”.
If I either don’t know the answer to those questions or if it takes me too long to answer, I take that as a sign that I’m not living in the moment, I’m not mindful, I may be overwhelmed in some way. If that’s the case, I take an even deeper breath and tell myself that I need to put myself back together.
Prior to doing this trick, I remember having days when I’d come into the office not quite knowing how I got there. Yes, I know I drove there, I know I got off bed at some point, etc., but all of that was a blur in my mind. Those days normally didn’t go well.
So, without looking at your phone or at the corner of your computer screen, can you say what day of the week and what day of the month it is today?