Saint Lucian cultural activist says working from home increased her creative juices (+video)

By Glen Simon, National Competitiveness and Productivity Council

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Drenia Frederick

(PRESS RELEASE) — Despite the devastating impact of COVID-19 globally and locally there here been some unintended positives, which have emerged, from this new normal. While many persons have lost jobs due to this pandemic, others have been forced into a new reality, working from home for the protection of themselves and their loved ones.

“You know you associate your home with that place where you come to for peace and quiet and you just let the day go. So, now it’s almost like you have to rewire. I must admit the first week, maybe I shouldn’t say this but it was hard getting into a rhythm of work. I think I spent I think like most people the entire week catching up on shows on Netflix, staying up until two in the morning just watching series and then after that you need to get your brain active or else you know it will turn to nothing.”

For the past two months, Drenia Frederick, director of events and production at the Cultural Development Foundation, has been working from home. She explained that one the challenge of getting her mind out of “lazy mode” to productive mode is by putting all unnecessary gadgets away and setting a routine for yourself.

“So when you get up on a morning, if you normally would exercise or go to the gym you do that routine and you get into the groove and it’s important to create an action plan for yourself. So that action plan includes all of the items that you are to complete for the duration of a month. Why put all of that down and list all of them 10 to 15 items, is because it will be on your mind while you’re doing something else and you know how the brain plays tricks on you. You’re focused to do one activity and it tells you ‘oh you know you need to do that’ and then you stop and you move to the next thing. So, you create that action plan with the list of things, all of the items, and what you’re going to do to complete it.”

Drenia Frederick

She said it’s important to maintain a healthy work-life balance and set limits.

“You have to give yourself a cutoff time or else the work never ends and that too isn’t good for you.”

As a creative person, she discovered that working for home has allowed her creative juices to flow ever more freely and has allowed her to delve deeper into her projects.

“So for me, the plus side is being able to do that sort of deep work in terms of the tasks that you have set before you the level of creativity and that feeling of comfort that you are in your own home you’re not pressured. You’re not pressured to go and get dressed and beat the traffic.”

We asked her opinion on whether work from home arrangements or teleworking should be kept in some measure even after St. Lucia is freed of this COVID-19 pandemic?

“But it does concede high levels of productivity and in terms of completing tasks, that polish that you want. Maybe some sort or type of rotation but also to allow companies and businesses to create a proper system or schedule for people working from home. I think this was always there but we never saw the benefits, we never used it and we never saw it as a tool for productivity.”

In a Business News Daily article entitled ‘Working from home increases productivity,’ researchers found that remote employees work 1.4 more days per month than their office-based counterparts, resulting in more than three additional weeks of work per year.



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One comment

  1. How demanding is your job? For most of us with extremely demanding jobs, these are the most challenging times for us. Balancing work and family while all is at home, especially with small children is not easy. The only way some of us can make it work, is by taking advantage of "overtime". We are not fortunate to have time to binge or procrastinate...

    You gave great advice, but as you clearly stated... This is what works for you.


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