I’m sitting here writing this blog in my pyjamas at 3pm in the afternoon. I gave myself permission to spend the day wearing my pyjamas because if I don’t, then I can't relax. For someone with an online business, self isolation and working from home hasn’t made a huge difference to my day apart from the fact that my children are here. That's translated to my children are still here.
I've always found it difficult to work in my pjs or any loungewear as I just don't feel productive. Some people can, I can't. In fact there have been studies that prove that our communication and productivity is affected by the way we dress. The choices we make are determined by our mood.
I have to relax today because if I don't, I’m sure to fall apart. Well that's how I felt yesterday. Exhaustion has certainly got the better of me!
Like other single Mums in the world who run their own business from home, I became a school teacher and school dinner lady overnight and have been for the past 6 weeks. I also have a 23 year old at home because he too has been forced to work from home. From 9 am when I return home from school drop off until 3pm in the afternoon, its me myself and I at home working unless I’m out with a client.
We moved into our new home in September and I’ve had all this space to myself for months! Some days I would even dance around going from room to room revelling in the fact that it's so quiet.
Now I hear my name called 537842 times a day and hear the oven beeping way too often for my liking. Blobs of toothpaste are left in the sink, the shower gel is left dripping on the side, there's only one odd sock left on the drying rack...this is my new normal!
After reminding my eldest son which bins and recycling needs to go out, I completely lost it this morning when I came downstairs and opened the kitchen door to be greeted by the bin and overflowing pile of recycling staring at me. My son is 6ft 2 and as much as my 5ft 5 frame is capable of dragging him out of his bed, my mouth did the heavy lifting for me.
So this morning, I showered and put on a fresh pair of pyjamas and decided to do nothing today. I knew that I wouldn't get a lot done in my pjs and that's exactly the result I wanted.
I’ve suffered with severe bouts of depression in the past so I was ready for whatever the pandemic was going to throw my way.
I can't recommend journaling enough. I’ve been journaling hard! Having an attitude of gratitude is not a fad! I’m not one to fake the funk so if I say it works, please trust me! Practising gratitude and making a list of the things that I'm grateful for is not only a lovely way to spend my morning before my boys are up, but it really does attract abundance in my life and helps me to see things clearer and appreciate what I have.
It's no doubt a worrying time and I had to remind myself of the ways that I can help myself so that I don't disappear down a dark hole of despair.
I don’t read or watch the news so that wasn't anything that I needed to stop doing. I hear everything on Facebook anyway, which isn't always an escape when you have an online business, so I unfollowed a few accounts that spread fake news and negativity.
We live in a beautiful village with lots of green space so walking to the supermarket and back every two days or having a race in the garden with the youngest has been my exercise. I don't know how, but my mind does feel clearer afterwards. I’m thankful every day that the sun comes out because I know how the grey and gloomy weather can have an affect on my mood.
Getting dressed every day in outfits that I could easily leave the house in, awakened some triggers from my past when I was constantly told that I don't need to dress up to go down the road. Anyone would think I had a ballgown on, and it eventually caused me to play down my outfits so as not to draw attention.
People say “you're really into your fashion” or that I love clothes. Which isn’t and has never been entirely true. I’ll occasionally wear a trending piece such as a puff sleeve on a plain white t-shirt to add a twist to a wardrobe staple, but I'm all about the classic and timeless pieces and how my clothes make me feel. My wardrobe is always an instant mood lifter if I need one and I can't imagine how else I would have gotten through the past six weeks if I didn't stick to my daily routine of getting dressed in my normal Monday to Friday clothes.
If I find my mind drifting into the unknown, I’ll listen to music and reminisce about the good times and nights out with girlfriends or listen to a personal development book for inspiration.
The way you dress and the way you carry yourself, has an affect on the way you feel. Which also ties in nicely with ‘your mind’.
For most of the country who usually leave the house to go to work during the week, anytime spent at home is in some type of loungewear. So working from home meant working in loungewear!
I didn't agree with this from day one and expressed it loudly! It's a recipe for disaster when we didn't even know how long we will be at home. I heard people say things like “it doesn't matter because I'm not seeing anyone or going anywhere.” It's as if any kind of effort went out of the window overnight!
The online clothing stores that I always shop from, changed their websites and their ads to show loungewear in abundance. Beautiful styles to make staying at home, as stylish as ever. It’s supply and demand, I get it. But self isolation and lockdown has been going for a long time now and people are getting fed up. Everyone is sick of wearing clothes just to wear in the house, because they’re fed up of being in the house!
Now the sites have changed their content to displaying stylish pieces to wear while working from home, styles with gorgeous blouses and tops perfect for connecting online, because they realised that it's not helping anyone to keep encouraging loungewear. Sorry to say I told you so, but I did.
I’m not saying not to wear any loungewear while you're on lockdown, just mix it up a bit, especially if it’s not what you usually wear Monday to Friday! Squeeze into your jeans every few days too. Which by the way is a much better way to see how much you're eating than relying on the scales!
Try wearing your clothes a little differently and experiment with different looks that you can wear when we're allowed out again. Add an unworn scarf to your bag to add a little style to your outfit for your supermarket shop. A bright coloured nail polish is always an instant mood lifter too.
My work from home style hasn't changed that much. I have a pair of bright red trousers that are usually worn when I'm at a business event or networking, but I've worn them a few times since lockdown began to maintain a positive mindset and with a high waist they are as comfy as my pjs!
If you haven't already, use this time to declutter your wardrobe. I declutter my wardrobe every three months and sooner if there's a few items in there that I’m not likely to wear again.
Start with your style and wardrobe goals in mind.
How do you want to emerge when this is all over?
Where will be the first place you go?
What will you wear?
Bear all this in mind as you declutter your wardrobe.
This is an ideal time for a transformation.
Don't keep anything in your wardrobe that doesn't reflect the woman you want to be. Most of the stores have a sale on and free delivery, so use this time to get what you need. You need your wardrobe now more than ever. Wear the clothes that make you feel good and yes pyjamas feel so good, but so does a pair of jeans and a sequin top!
If casual clothes at home are your thing, be sure to throw out anything worn, stained or with a hole in it. You deserve better! The way you treat yourself, is the way you allow the world to treat you too. If you don't want to bump into anyone when you're wearing it, you shouldn't even own it!
Remember we are what we wear.
So in conclusion, I know that this will be the best day that I've had in weeks, doing nothing. There's only so many times you can hear ‘Mum’ or remind your children to pick up after themselves, so it's pyjamas all the way today...my favourite ones of course.
If you're feeling fed up at home wearing the same clothes day in day and ready to make a change to your style and wardrobe, join my FREE online masterclass ‘Makeover Your Style & Wardrobe In Six Simple Steps’ on 5th May.
The world is slowly reopening and it's your time to be seen as confident and stylish as ever!
A Style Coach & Image Consultant.