The news is awful, the weather is terrible, but there are still many reasons to be cheerful. If you are struggling to find any, here PRs suggest some ways to brighten up your day.
When you are in the office
Pastries, sharing passions and focusing on wellness
Gemma Maxey, senior account director at brand design PR specialist Red Setter: “Being able to split our week between the office and home is really appreciated, but there’s a lot to be said for coming into the office to stay cheerful. I work with a great team and being around them is the best way to lift my mood.
“We do a lot internally to make the work environment as uplifting as possible. From being greeted with coffee and pastries on Mondays, to team lunches on Wednesdays. Our regular ‘Red Setter Selects’ allows us to share our passions about themes in branding that have caught our eye too. This is supported by a monthly wellness budget with access to things like healthy meal deliveries, yoga classes and massage treatments.
“I personally also try to meditate most mornings. It helps to clear my head, so I’m able to tackle whatever the day brings in a much more productive and positive way”.
When you are working from home
A pat on the back
Charlotte Minett, senior account manager at PR agency 72point: “When it’s just you and your laptop in a dark room trying to get something over the line it’s easy to slip into a mood just as bad as the weather is.
“When this happens, I like to take a step back and remember that our line of work is actually pretty cool. The PR industry is so fast moving, especially in news generation (news never stops), it’s easy to forget just how many people a single campaign can reach and impact.
“When I see a story I have worked on, or have written, make the pages of four-plus national titles, I take great comfort in the fact that was probably drafted in my living room and I was almost certainly wearing my comfiest hoodie and slippers to do so - who said PR always had to be glamorous?!”
Laugh and dance
Pam Lyddon, CEO and founder of agency Bright Star Digital: “I watch a lot of Michael McIntyre, Peter Kay and Micky Flanagan on YouTube. Failing that, kitchen disco working from home with a bit of Beyoncé Break My Soul - never fails to make me happy."
Treats, socialising and me-time
Hayley Brackley, learning consultant and coach: “These are my tips for staying cheery on a gloomy winter’s day, when you work from home and the world seems to be falling further into the rabbit hole that is Alice’s wonderland of chaotic news.
- “Embrace the good - if it’s cold, you can pad about in the most ridiculous fluffy socks!
- “Get cosy - working from home means no one can see the snuggly blanket you’ve wrapped yourself in.
- “Get a drink - pre 5pm, it’s a hot chocolate, post 5pm mulled cider anyone?
- “Treat your senses - get a wax warmer and fill it with something sweet and spicy.
- “Be sure to interact - it is good to mix with actual humans.
- ‘”Thanks, but I can’t…’ - as much as it’s great to see people, sometimes a good book and a comfy sofa are just what’s needed.”
Three healthy habits
Stephen Hockley, freelance writer: “So here are my pretty weird ways to stay happy. I used to have seasonal depression, so this is something I've spent a lot of effort to master. There aren't many things that have a 100% success rate for me, but here they are:
“1. Yoga. For me, this is one of the most powerful ways I know to regulate my mood. I put on a YouTube video and follow it every morning, and I've done it for years.
“2. Cold showers! I know it sounds gross... but I can say with absolute certainty that I have ALWAYS felt better after a cold shower. They are the ultimate mood regulator to me. Even a quick blast will help out.
“3. Intermittent fasting. I find that if I eat only after I have started work (or even after I've finished), I'm usually more motivated to get through the day. Gives me something to look forward to!”
Being outside (ideally with a dog!)
Laura Perkes, founder of PR with Perkes and author of How to Get PR: “Enjoying some time outdoors is also an instant mood-lifter. Even if it's 10 mins in the garden with a coffee or a brisk 30-min walk, it helps to blow the cobwebs away and helps you to focus when you're back at your desk. Failing that, there's nothing more entertaining than dogs. If you don't own a dog, don't go out and buy one, but if you do have dogs, roll around on the floor playing with them for five mins, you'll all love it!”
Relaxing and reviving
Julia Linehan, founder and managing director at PR agency The Digital Voice: “From a personal perspective, I treat myself to a fortnightly massage, plus good food and feel-good films for evenings in front of the fire. As a company, and one that is 100% remote, we have lots of energy inducing activities on a Monday and Friday morning including breath work, wheel of 'snaps', meditation, boost your power hour and more. Even small things like plenty of giphy's throughout the day on our Slack channel keep us entertained and smiling.”
We hope some of the above has given you a few ideas for brightening up the dark days ahead. Personally, I am going to take some action right now and make myself a hot chocolate. Cheers everyone!
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