I’ve been struggling to stay motivated as of late. I’m sure I’m not alone. Millions of Americans are under lock down as we collectively try to prevent the spread of this damned virus. To read the news is demoralizing, but as a journalist, it’s unavoidable.

It seems like every other story I write these days is about the affect the virus is having on the industry, supply chain, financial performance of this company or that.

I start my third week working from home tomorrow. Apart from walking the dog and bi-monthly runs to the grocery store, I haven’t gotten out of the house much. We’ve been working on changing that. The parks are still open to foot traffic, at least for now. And when we’ve been blessed with especially good weather, the backyard becomes my sanctuary — my escape from the confines of my own home.

I suppose things could be worse. For the moment my Fiancé and I are both in good health and on sound financial footing. The fact is we got pretty lucky. There are so many who have lost their livelihoods or worse a loved one as a result of this pandemic.

Broken barriers

As you might imagine, working in a creative field can leave one with little in reserve for personal pursuits. And to be honest, working from home hasn’t helped my situation.

Much of the work, life balance I’ve been able to cultivate over the past five years has been predicated on leaving work at work.

Now I’m figuring out how to balance the two when my office is also my kitchen table.

For the most part I’ve been trying to start and end my day as I would normally, but it isn’t the same. It’s all too easy to work through lunch, spend an extra hour or two on a story that needs a little extra work.

To be honest, I miss my commute.

Stimulation and distractions

I’ve been drinking a lot more coffee lately. It seems to be helping.

Around Christmas time my father sent us a few pounds of Dark Brazilian Santos beans. It’s a favorite that we discovered almost way back when I was in high school.

The coffee is rich and ever so slightly acidic. It goes well with a little oat milk and sugar, but can be taken black too. When brewed in a pour over, it is particularly potent. One cup goes a long way. Sadly, we’re nearing the bottom of the last bag.

We’ve also been playing a lot more music around the house these days.

Chilled Cow’s various lofi hip hop streams have been a particular favorite as of late. The music has an atmospheric quality that fades into the background. Think more chill coffee shop vibes than hip hop. I find it’s great to write to.

More than anything, we’re trying to stay positive. For me, that means writing, getting out with my camera, and spending quality time with my family, even if that’s through a screen.

I wish there was more I could do, but for now hunkering down is the best I can manage.

Stay safe, sane and healthy everyone!

The bright spot of last week: capturing this shot of my dog, Toro, mid-leap.