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Fighting the Lockdown Guilt

Advertising Agency
London, UK
Leo Burnett London’s Steph Ellis doesn’t want to write her King Lear while she waits out quarantine, and that’s just fine
Welcome to the weirdest working times of our lifetimes. As someone who loves to work from home and really thrives from the quietness and space to think, even I’m finding this challenging. Admittedly, one of the most difficult things to deal with has not been hot-desking around my own small flat or having to do the thing I have the biggest fear of every day (conference calls). Nope, it’s been my own guilt.
I tend to work better with a deadline looming over me. A meeting I know I have to be at or an airdate to work towards. But now with no commute and a bit more time on my hands, I’m asking myself, how do you balance doing your work without feeling guilty about not doing anything at all in your downtime? Because let’s be honest, feeling guilty is the last thing we need right now. Shakespeare might have written King Lear when in quarantine but maybe I just don’t want to.
So, I’ve written a list of things I know I should be doing that have really helped me and things I probably shouldn’t admit to doing but I’ve bloody loved. I call it my ‘Do’s and Do’s’ list. It’s kept me sane so hopefully it can do the same for you.
o I’ve taken up yoga. I know everyone has but it’s been great for the mind, doing 20 minutes every day or so really helps the productivity flow and gets you out of your desk chair. I’ve also spent time doing another sport you can do indoors, a Netflix marathon after the working day is over. I won’t disclose which I’ve done more of.
o  I’ve got back onto Twitter. Me and two friends run a parody Twitter account (@FacesOfGregg, give us a follow) and it’s a solid way to get out any cabin fever frustrations.

I’ve also spent time trying to avoid getting down a negative Twitter spiral. Remember, it’s important to keep up to date with current affairs but step AWAY from the hashtags when it gets too much.
o I’ve started learning to cook. I’m a soup gal and since I one, can’t leave the house and two, my precious Eat has been closed down (RIP Creamy Sweetcorn soup), I’ve attempted to make some from scratch. I’ve also enjoyed getting someone else to cook for me, the local restaurants in need of help right now. The time of ordering a takeaway and feeling like a hero won’t last long.
o I’ve been getting ready for most days like I would do for the office, it really helps you set yourself up for the day ahead and gets your brain into work mode. I’ve even tried carrying on wearing something fancy for Friday. I’ve also had to change out of PJ’s for a 2pm conference call this week and I know I’m not alone.
Stay sane and safe, I’ll see you on the other side.

Steph Ellis is a senior creative at Leo Burnett London.
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