Uncategorized

Working from home – email etiquette.

By now, many of us have moved away from our office space environment to settling into a work from home routine.

Maybe you’ve been comfy cozy up on the couch with your laptop? Have you converted a spare bedroom into your work space? Hunkered down on your dinning room table? What does your work from home reality look like? Personally, I wander a little bit through out the day.

I start my work day on the couch around 8:30am while I savour my morning cup of tea. Checking and replying emails, touching base with my calendar for the day – video calls have become my new normal these days, and having the news playing in the background.

Around 10:00am I take a little break and usually scramble a few eggs and pour myself another tea. This time my laptop and I spend some quality t-i-m-e at the kitchen island, working away.

Lunch usually consists of either a soup, a salad or a combination of both. I try and take an hour away from the computer for a lunch break and catch up on social media or FaceTime some friends or family members for a shared lunch break. I then spend the afternoon working upstairs in my office. I have a standing 3:00pm video call with our team daily which has been interfering with the time Tyson usually comes home. Taking the call upstairs is easier and quieter that way – plus it’s a welcomed changed of scenery.

One of the things that has had my little mind racing lately though has been work emails. I know in my office at least, my co-workers and I are usually freely bouncing around each others offices through out the day and discussing things in a very unofficial and off the cusp manor. If you were to pop your head into my office and ask me something, my answer is probably not going to be grammatically correct and probably not a full sentence either. Yup…OK… Nope… Whatever…Sushi for lunch works for me!

Working from home and not having that quick and easy conversation flow lately means we are left having email conversations more frequently.  I have become very aware that the way that we speak casually, is not the way we should be speaking in work related emails. Here is what I mean by this and examples of how I have been adjusting my work emails lately. Just because we’re sitting at home comfortably, I don’t think that means it has to come through in our words.

So, it took me awhile to respond to an email because I was sidetracked by my adorable dog doing cute adorable little dog things and because I was doing 4 loads of laundry while starting on prepping dinner.

How I would usually respond: Sorry for the delay.

How I have been responding: Thank you for your patience in my response.

My schedule matters too when making meeting requests, I’m juggling a lot right now and want to be able to watch the daily heath updates.

How I would usually respond: Whatever works best for you, works for me.

How I have been responding: Could you do __:__am/pm?

Yeah, you’re welcome.

How I would usually respond: No problem / no worries 🙂

How I have been responding: I’m always happy to help.

I know what I’m doing, Karen!

How I would usually respond: I think maybe we should do is this way…

How I have been responding: It would be best if we did it this way…

Do you understand me this time?

How I would usually respond: I hope that makes sense?

How I have been responding: Please let me know if you have an further questions.

Where are heck are you on this project?

How I would usually respond: Just wanted to check in and follow up on…

How I have been responding: Please advise when I can expect an update on this.

I made a mistake.

How I would usually respond: AHH! Sorry, my bad!! I totally missed that!

How I have been responding: Great catch, thank you so much!

 

These are just a few examples of things I am working on being conscious of while working from home. I might be sitting here in sweat pants and a top knot, I might have a wandering eye to the tv or walking my dog and getting some fresh air. I might be doing all these things at once but I don’t need you to know about it while we’re working.

Stay home. Stay comfy. Stay professional.

Are there any adjustments you’ve made since working from home? I’d love to hear about them!

As always, don’t forget to subscribe to LiveLaughLearn.blog to stay up to date and follow on Instagram @LiveLaughLearn.blog

XOXO.

B.

 

Uncategorized

Dear 2020 brides,

Dear fellow brides,

In a very short amount of time, the coronavirus went from something we may have heard about on the news for a hot minute, to the only thing any of us are thinking about. Businesses are closing, people are beyond stressed about their jobs and some are out of work all together, everyone is practicing social distancing (at least they should be!), and we are all constantly worried about the health of our loved ones. It’s a LOT to process. But on top of all of that, you’ve had to also think about your wedding day.

Just two weeks ago, you were probably really excited. Maybe your bridal shower was around the corner. Maybe you were planning fun activities for your bachelorette party. Or shopping for the perfect white dress for your rehearsal dinner – because when else can you wear a fancy white dress?! Maybe, you were really looking forward to your next wedding dress fitting. Or for some, you were mere days away from saying I do. I fall into that last category. I was packing my luggage and decorations with the idea we’d be leaving for our wedding in Jamaica in just a few days.

No matter what your timeline was/is, I understand how you feel.

We have all been looking forward to this day for longer than we can remember. It has been in our minds since we were little girls, growing infinitely more real as soon as we fell in love. And now it feels a little bit like we’re being robbed. This should be the happiest, most magical time in our lives, and instead, it is full of sadness, confusion, and fear. And on top of that, you’ve probably felt guilty for feeling this way because there are so many other things going on right now. But maintaining perspective is hard in moments when you feel heartbreak. It just is.

If you’ve thought “why NOW?”, you’re not alone, sister. This past week, I have connected with so many of you who are going through this. And even still, I have felt at times like God or the universe, or whatever is bigger than us, simply doesn’t want me to experience this joy. It has felt, at times, like I’m being told, “weddings were for everyone else, just not for you.

After all, all of us have watched countless siblings, cousins, friends, Aunts, Uncles, coworkers, and more get married. We’ve fit 8, 9, 10 weddings into one year – flying all over the world to do it. We have been dutiful bridesmaids and maids of honor. We’ve witnessed other brides freak out about things that simply did not matter. What we all would give to be stressed out by something small instead of something as massive as this.

Instead of typos or a needy family member, we are faced with decisions that feel impossibly hard.

What do you do when your wedding gets cancelled one or two weeks out?! What do you do when the CDC forced cancellations for 8 weeks, but you are 10, 12, 14 weeks out and your vendors are still telling you you’re fine? How do you know what to do when no one has any idea what the world is going to look like then? And how do you process all of this quickly enough to see what is happening with clear eyes?

Because the truth is, we all know that what is going on right now is bigger than canceled weddings. This is all harder than just: will I be allowed to go or not? It’s not like this is plowing through like a hurricane, leaving destruction it’s path, never to be seen again. There is a looming cloud of fear and uncertainty over the whole world right now because we have no idea what will happen or how long this will stay.

And while it is tempting to hold tight to optimism and hope for a miracle, we also have an ethical weight on our hearts. What if people really don’t feel comfortable traveling or going to a big event at that time? And the one that really got my anxiety going… what if we still had our wedding because we *technically* could, and people we love got sick? I don’t know if we could bear that guilt. It is devastating to even consider.

So where does that leave us?

Well, friends, I can’t tell you that. We all have to make the decisions that are best for us. This is an unpredictable and unprecedented time in our history. So unfortunately, I don’t have any concrete advice for you. That’s not why I wrote this post.

I wrote it so you would know that you are not alone. That you are worthy of happiness. That other people who are trying to make you feel better might not actually make you feel better, and that’s okay. I wrote this so you would know that, despite everything else going on in the world, you are allowed to be sad about this. You are allowed to cry and be mad and take your time processing everything. This is a LOT. You’re not just planning a wedding or rescheduling a wedding or dealing with a cancelled wedding. You’re also dealing with a GLOBAL PANDEMIC. Girl, take a deep breath. This is HARD.

Please know that I am sending so much love to each and every one of you. You will figure out the best way to handle this situation in time. If you’re not there yet, just squeeze your fiance’s hand tighter. Make every kiss count. Lean into him or her. Acknowledge the fact that this card we’ve been dealt isn’t fair, but also acknowledge how freaking lucky you are to have found someone you love enough that you want to spend your entire life with them. We still have so much to be grateful for.

You’ve got this!

XOXO.

B.

Our Postponement

We have personally decided to postpone our March 30th (today) wedding. We made the call about 3 weeks ago. At the time, it felt like a cancellation was inevitable – whether it was because the CDC extended their recommendation for no events over 50 people or not, we knew they would be tightening if not closing the border. We ultimately knew we’d feel uncomfortable asking our friends and family to travel during this uncertain time. We couldn’t in our right minds ask them to travel to Jamaica with us knowing they would have to be isiolated from their kids and not able to work for 14 days after we returned. And the longer we sat in denial, the less likely we’d be able to secure another 2020 date at our venue. So, we went for it!

This has been an emotional week, but even though it took us a second to come to this conclusion, we now know it was 1000% the right move. We just had to go through a quick mourning process! And now that we’re through it, we can exhale.

So… we are currently in the works of looking at dates in November. I’ve had a few people as me “what if everything isn’t resolved by then either?” And to that I don’t have an answer. If it’s not still safe for our loved ones to attend in November, we’ll figure something out. But for now, we’re taking it day by day. We’re doing our part by staying home and encouraging others to #flattenthecurve, and praying really hard for things to get better over these next few months. Not just for us, but for all of us. That’s really all we can do.

Are you postponing your wedding?

I’d love to hear your story and how you’re coping – let me know in the comments.

As always, don’t forget to subscribe to LiveLaughLearn.blog to stay up to date and follow on Instagram @LiveLaughLearn.blog

XOXO.

B.

 

 

You’ve got this.

 

Real Talk · Uncategorized

5 Things I’m OK learning to be OK with as an adult.

If I’ve learned anything these last few years (OK, like year and a half) since turning 30, it’s that we are all truly on our own journey and life is going to look different for everyone. And you know what? THAT’S OK! It sounds like an easy thing to wrap your mind around, but for me, it’s taken some time to learn to feel OK about certain things. This post is a little more personal than I usually go with you, but I just felt like it was necessary to write because I think so many of us feel this way.

I really hope this resonates with anyone struggling with these things like I have. I’m growing and learning and accepting every day though, which feels really great. Here are 5 things I’m OK learning to be OK with as an adult.

Timelines work out differently than you imagine in your early 20’s.

When I was freshly in my 20’s, I had a vision of how the decade would play out. I’d go to university, I’d find a great job, I’d marry my high school sweetheart, I’d start a family, etc, etc. I’m sure I wasn’t the first person to be naive to the fact that sometimes things just don’t work out that way. I mean I had absolutely no clue my career would take the turn that it has and I’d end up being in fiance by day and a blogger by night. That definitely was not in 20-year-old Becca’s 10-year plan. But here I am. On a different path than what I ever thought possible. It’s definitely not what I thought it would be, but I truly believe I’m exactly where I was always meant to be. And that goes for my career, my relationship, my house – everything. Did I get married at 24 like I thought I would? Nope. But those timelines work out differently for everyone and to be honest, I’m really happy with mine and it feels SO good to be at peace with that. I’m obviously engaged now but it’s just way later than I would have guessed, but I’m JUST as happy if not more because I know myself so well.

If you’re reading this and you’re just starting out your 20’s or maybe you’re 25 or 26, my best advice is to just eliminate the pressure of trying to live up to what you thought your 20’s would be like. You’re not failing if you don’t hit a certain milestone by X age. You’re not failing if your plan changes completely and everything you thought you wanted no longer seems important. That is LIFE. It looks different for everyone, so try not to compare your journey to someone else’s.

Balance doesn’t always happen.

When I was younger I’d imagine this perfect life where I’m done with work every day by 5 pm and then I’d come home to my family where the weight of my job would never affect me. Ha! Such a funny joke looking back now isn’t it? I thought achieving the whole work-life balance thing wasn’t going to be hard, but I could not have been more wrong about this one. Around this time last year, I came to the realization that “balance” doesn’t mean being able to do everything perfectly. It means choosing which “buckets” (family, friends, work, relationship) of my life I want to give more time and attention to and that those buckets would change all the time. So now, to me, balance means knowing that I actually can’t do it all. But instead, deciding where to focus my energy.

This whole thing really was a revelation for me, which is why I wrote a big post about it previously. I’m a perfectionist by nature, so discovering what balance really means (at least to me – it’s different for everyone) and learning to be OK with it was a game-changer for me.

Motivation comes and goes.

This has been a really huge lesson for me to learn throughout my 20’s. If you struggle with feeling guilty or bad about yourself if you’re not super motivated all the time, I’m here to let you know IT’S OK! One day you’re going to kill it and get #allthethings done and the next you’re going to wonder how you were ever so productive.

Just like everything else in life, there are going to be ebbs and flows and your best bet is to just roll with it. The key to rolling with it is to not get on social media and compare yourself to others. You’re seeing their highlight reel (just like they’re probably seeing yours)!! Don’t compare someone’s best day to your average day. This is a constant work in progress for me, but I feel like the fact that I’m aware enough to know I need to work on it means I’m heading in the right direction.

You aren’t always happy.

Important PSA: You can still have a very satisfying and GOOD life and not be happy 100% of the time. I mean who the heck feels completely happy every day, all day? Not me and I’m OK with that. Bad days are going to happen, the important thing is how you respond. I hope I don’t sound too much like a coach or something right now, but it’s just what I’ve learned in the last 10 years. And that popular saying we all probably rolled our eyes at when we were younger is so true – “Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it.”

Stressful times are going to happen.

Just like being happy and feeling motivated, stressful times are going to come and go. This is one area I’m definitely still wrapping my head around because I’m still learning how to best handle myself during stressful times, but I feel like I’ve made a ton of progress in the last two or three years. I think it’s because I’ve gotten to know myself better and have figured out what my outlets are. Like brain dumps, walking, quiet time, etc. Try to pinpoint what works for you so you know how to de-stress in a healthy, productive way.

All I know is, when I was younger all I wanted was to be older. And I’d envision how fun it would be to have a house, a relationship, be able to travel, etc., but once you actually reach adulthood and see the other side of things, you realize that although it is great, it’s not all rainbows and unicorns. Know what I mean? But with the harder times, there are even more good times. So if you’re struggling to be OK with your life looking different than what you thought, don’t! You’re actually killing it, I guarantee it.

Is there anything in your life that’s totally different than you thought it would be or is “off-timeline”?

As always, don’t forget to subscribe to LiveLaughLearn.blog to stay up to date and follow on Instagram @LiveLaughLearn.blog

XOXO.

B.