Productivity for Work: Getting Past the Sick Day Blues

Let’s face it, sick days may be inevitable, especially during cold season, so how can you still be productive even in the midst of these times?

Push past the sick day blues with productivity? Before you think it’s crazy just weigh in what you might actually still be able to do. 

I think like most people, I absolutely hate getting sick. If I see a person coughing or sneezing nearby, I will try to walk at a distance to avoid them, without looking too awkward if you know what I mean. But every once in a while, despite living a healthy lifestyle, I will get sick with a cold or a sore throat especially during the winter season.

Personally, I hate taking sick days. I hate just having to lie in bed and do absolutely nothing. It’s so boring. But sometimes, for the sake of colleagues, it’s better to stay at home or even work from home especially if you have something that is contagious.

While I know my productivity levels may not equate to the same efficiency when I am sick versus when I am well; I am still convinced that there are reasonable and feasible ways to be productive.

How to Be Productive Even When You’re Under the Weather

1.) Know Your Limits. It’s good to know what your limitations are based on the sickness that you have. For example, if your voice is weak from a sore throat, then try to focus on communicating via text, emails and Skype. Try to limit voice communication to the only dire “need to have today” type of conversations. Sometimes when we try to push ourselves too much we end up feeling worse and unable to do anything at all.

2.) Take Extra Care. Don’t forget that when your body is in this state, it needs extra care. Drink plenty of water, eat nutritious foods to energize the body and try not to overexert yourself. If you take a little extra care, then most likely your recovery will be more rapid than it would be if you still tried to do all the things that you normally do.

3.) Focus on the “Can-Do’s.” Okay, so of course you’ll have limitations when you’re under the weather but what can you do? If you’re working from home and can’t go into the office, then maybe you don’t have access to all of the software and equipment that you normally would have, but thankfully since so many things are Internet-based, there are still many things that you can do in order to still get work done. For example, in the Marketing world, I can still work on e-marketing campaigns, design cool thumbnails in Canva, communicate via Trello boards, update social media accounts, curate content for website and promo materials, etc. There are still many things that I can do, but the efficiency of course, depends on the level of sickness. For example, when I had a migrane that made me sensitive to light (artifical or natural) it made it quite challenging to even keep my laptop open. There’s no shame in this, it’s just good to know what you can and cannot do and to know that eventually, you will feel better.

4.) Be Patient With Yourself. Sometimes when we get sick with a cold, sore throat, etc., it’s our body’s way of saying that it needs a bit more rest. Sometimes it is even the result of a super busy season of life that has required more of your time and energy. But regardless the trigger, we must be patient with ourselves and make the most out of even these gloomy, old sick says. If leveraged and perceived correctly, they can still most certainly add value to our lives.

Tell Me…What do you think about productivity when you’re sick? Do you agree or disagree? Let me know in the comments below.

Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

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Eton Mess with Fresh Cherries

Eton Mess–this is what dessert dreams are made of! No fuss, no perfection just simply delicious!

Crumbled, crispy meringue, light whipped cream and fresh sweet black cherries combined together are my twist on the classic British dessert known as Eton Mess.

According to my research, Eton Mess was a dessert that originated from Eton College in the UK. While I have discovered numerous narratives that try to identify the exact creation of the dessert, I have settled it within me to let the story remain unsettled, if you know what I mean. Could it have been the school kids that combined all of these ingredients together into a beautiful mess, or could it have been the cafeteria staff that decided to make a new creation or was it a beautiful accident in the culmination of 3 delicious ingredients coming together to form a heavenly dessert delight? I don’t know, but Eton Mess is one of those dessert urban legends that recipe dream books are made of. I like that it’s a mystery. In fact, I relish in the mystery.

Traditionally, Eton Mess is always prepared with fresh, ripe strawberries. But since I LOVE cherries and made this recipe during cherry season, it was to my delight to use cherries. I also took complete creative liberty to write a recipe that I would find delicious and thus why I included other flavor elements like the juice and marmalade. Feel free to choose your preferred fruit because I find that with whipped cream and meringue cookies, you really can’t go wrong.

Here’s my recipe:

Erica’s Eton Mess with Fresh Cherries

  • 1 1/4 cups fresh cherries
  • 1-2 TBSP white sugar
  • 2 TBSP cherry juice
  • 1 TBSP raspberry marmalade
  • 1 1/2 cups crumbled meringue (either store-bought or made from scratch)
  • 1 1/2 -2 cups of lightly sweetened whipped cream (I made my whipped cream at home)

Preparation:

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In a large bowl, combine together the cherries and sugar and stir until the sugar is dissolved.

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Then add the cherry juice and raspberry marmalade and stir until well combined.

In a separate bowl, crumble the meringue into bite size pieces.

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Then add the meringue piece and whipped cream into the cherry mixture and gently fold everything together until it is well combined.

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Serve in beautiful glasses and top with a few more cherries on top.

Heavenly…trust me…Heavenly.

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Creamy Rice Pudding

Creamy tender rice, lightly sweetened and warmly spiced with cinnamon, vanilla & nutmeg. 

 

Rice pudding is a favorite dessert of mine because it tastes so decadent but light at the same time. Plus, it’s super simple to make. Basically, if you can measure ingredients (or even eye-ball them) then you can make rice pudding because everything goes into the pot at one time and with occasional stirring, you have a beautiful dessert.

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Creamy Rice Pudding

Serves 4
  • 1/4 cup short grain rice
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 TBSP cream
  • 1-2 TBSP butter
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 TBSP sugar (add more to your preferred level of sweetness)
  • Optional toppings: whipped cream, nuts or fruit

Preparation:

In a medium pot combine all of the ingredients together and stir.

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Place the pot over medium heat, slightly covered and simmer for 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally to ensure that it does not stick.

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Remove from the heat and serve warm or pour it into a heat-safe bowl, covered with plastic wrap pressed against the rice pudding (to ensure that it does not form the layer of skin on top).

Serve cold if desired with whipped cream, nuts or fruit.

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Note: Depending on the consistency that you like your rice pudding, you may want to add more milk and/or cream. I always like to add extra but it’s totally about personal preference. Enjoy it as you wish!

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Bon Appetit!

Poetry is…

Poetry is…

by EE Winkler

poetry is rhythmic healing for my soul’s delight

with words I reconstruct my day and build dreams in the night

in a matter of moments I can be anywhere I want to be

with a few lines or verses I write a new story

poetry is rhythmic healing for my soul’s delight

since my childhood it has not betrayed through joy or through plight

it has been there to right my triumphs and comfort my despair

it never leaves me wondering if it really cares

poetry is rhythmic healing for my soul’s delight

fueled both by sorrow and joy do they simultaneously ignite

a sputtering of endless words that somehow coexist

to help my brain take my thoughts and make sense of all of it

poetry is rhythmic healing for my soul’s delight

no matter where I am it has been by my side

with a longing to convey the emotions that bang on the door of my heart

it is poetry that has remained the train for my feelings to embark

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Photo by Michael Mongin on Unsplash

Just for Today (Imagine)

Just For Today

by EE Winkler

Just for today imagine that you can’t lose

and that every wrong around you can be diffused

you don’t have to be led by the feelings at bay

if you can imagine just for today

Just for today imagine that hope is restored

in the things that you’ve always been longing for

no longer bound by the limitations you see or say

if you can imagine just for today

Just for today imagine that there are endless possibilities

to be the person that you always longed to be

not restricted in any single way

if you can imagine just for today

Just for today imagine that the end is near

not to keep you contained or bound in fear

but to finally give you a chance to really live beyond the zone in the grey

if you can imagine just for today.

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Photo by Daniele Levis Pelusi on Unsplash