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Surviving 24 Hours

Working online has its perks:

  1. You get to spend a lot of time with your family while working (assuming you work from home and if you happen to live with your loved ones)
  2. You work at your own pace wherever and whenever you want (provided you are not working on something urgent and/or location-specific)
  3. You don’t have to dress up grandly or go out of the house to check email or touch base with your virtual team.

But there are days when, to borrow my Mom’s term for it, “you just can’t hack it”.  What are the most delirious ways you can come up with to survive a day (and night!) filled with fiery deadlines, nerve-wracking feedback and migraine-inducing colleagues?

DITCH THE GADGET

You do work online, but the Internet must not rule your business and your life.  I travel with just an iPhone and it’s all I need because this way, it leaves room for bottles of formula, water, baby diapers and baby clothes that I always lug around on one arm as I carry my baby on the other arm.  During breaks, I put my phones on silent and get back to them as soon as I resume work.  The world doesn’t end if you fail to answer an SMS or call for JUST a few minutes.  Do remember however to return calls and messages as soon as you get back to your work chair and shift to work mode.

BOOK AHEAD OF TIME

When my family and I go malling or stock up on a few grocery items, I always multi-task and bunch together a few tasks.  The day before, I confirm the travel schedule with Brother #3 (whom we hitch a ride from) and proceed to plot our itinerary in my head.  If someone needs a haircut, I book an early appointment and as soon as we reach our destination, that person goes to the salon while I do the grocery and my brother settles his business.  We find this setup extremely stress-relieving, time-saving and cost-efficient.

We also do the same thing when eating out —we order ahead of time most of the time (provided we have already made up our mind where to eat).

LET THERE BE LIGHT

First thing I always do upon waking up is drawing the curtains and letting the morning sunlight in.  It never fails to light one’s mood up!

Photo courtesy of @endangeredangel

TIPPING POINT

I learned a valuable lesson from Brother #3 and Sister #2: always leave or give a nice tip.  Most of the time, I get good service because Filipinos are inherently hospitable even to strangers.  On occasions when I come across someone mean or intolerable, I report the staff immediately to the supervisor and don’t leave a tip.

For more tips on local shores, you may refer to this article.  Also, let me know if this resembles your tipping style.

UPGRADE

What is the secret to getting an upgrade? It’s no secret, really.  When traveling, try to utilize as few providers as you possibly can.  You will attain a certain kind of privileged status and they will exert a special kind of effort for your comfort because they know you’re a valued consumer.

And one bonus tip:

OWN YOUR JOY

Live your life as if your life depended on keeping yourself and others happy.  Find reasons to be positive even in the direst situations.  I have a friend who laughs at her bald reflection every time she looks at herself in the mirror.  She is currently undergoing chemo and she has never relinquished her joy to the cancer cells slowly ravaging her body and her hair strands.

At the end of any stressful day, it all boils down to one thing: did you live it to the fullest knowing you did your best?

What are your survival tips?