In our NYC online therapy for working from home, we’ve been talking to a lot of freelancers that, while some may previously have worked from home before the stay-at-home order, are struggling to remain productive living during COVID-19. Freelancers typically work odd hours, grinding out work when they have it because it might be awhile before the next project comes along. This has become especially true with the precariousness of work during quarantine. Coupled with the added stress of a global pandemic, we’ve seen in our remote therapy sessions that it can be difficult to focus on work without distraction.
Wingspan, a resource and information hub for freelancers, recently featured Tribeca Therapy in “How To Sustain A State Of Flow When You Work From Home.” Speaking to our Founder and Clinical Director Matt Lundquist, the article provides some recommendations for freelancers, drawing on both our experience providing online therapy for working from home and our own transition to practicing therapy remotely during COVID-19.
When working from home in normal circumstances, it’s essential to have a routine. The freelancers we’re speaking to in our phone and video therapy for working from home have mentioned they miss their commute or their daily trip to the coffee shop. Working at home now doesn’t mean establishing a routine is any less needed, even if it looks different. Beyond keeping a steady nighttime routine, taking time in the evening to wind down, tune out, and maintain good sleep hygiene, Matt explains that it’s also important to ease into the day. “The temptation is especially high to look at email and start responding,” he observes. “Having at least some food and coffee or tea [to start your day], if that’s a part of your routine, is helpful.”
Matt also recommends breaking down larger projects into smaller chunks, even mixing in a variety of tasks to work on in order to break up the monotony like circuit training at the gym. Similar to giving certain muscle groups some relief, this can give your brain time to rest while exercising other parts. It also makes larger tasks seem more manageable. As he notes, “We tend to underestimate how long something will take to get done all at once, but underestimate how much we can accomplish in smaller chunks.”
And in the self-isolation of COVID-19, working from home while freelancing can be, well, isolating. Matt provides a few suggestions of how to get your co-workers or fellow freelancing friends involved, such as “Make a game out of the day by seeing who can work without distraction for the longest.”