Work-at-home lessons from fashion to lifestyle

Chicos Travelers on Over 50 Feeling 40

While working full time at home now, I am beginning to learn new lessons…about my work, my wardrobe, my home, my priorities, etc.

American author, John Maxwell, wrote, “Change is inevitable, growth is optional.”  I have never been a fan of change.  While I understand it is inevitable, I am a creature of habit. However, this current state of our world has brought me to a place where I can embrace change and look for the growth opportunities.

So many loud voices clamoring for my attention were circling around my M-F work life.  Everything had to happen exactly in order for me to accomplish what was on my plate with no interruptions.  I pumped gas at the same time, prepared weekly lunches at the same time, worked on the blog at the same time…. Then this huge interruption came out of nowhere.  I let it rattle my work pace at first with immense stress, but now, I am learning to “go with the flow.”  Remember that phrase?  In order to grow, I must be nimble right now and not let my new, constantly changing schedule cause me to stress.  I still do not have a regimented workout time, but I do believe I will get there eventually or be open enough to workout at different times of the day whenever the opportunity arises.

Where there is growth, there is confidence.  Confidence exudes positivity and hope that more exists for us to do.  I choose to grow at this time and listen through the quiet to hear what my priorities should be.  Well, I know my faith and family are at the top of the list, but out of all the future plans I have, what should I pursue first?  I will let you know when I figure this out.

One thing is for sure…coming home has inspired me to grow even more.  For the first time in a long time I want to do work around the house and in the yard.  I want to fill some passions in my heart in new ways.  I am excited to see what new growth will produce.

 

LESSONS IN STYLE

Casual Chic from Chicos on Ovr 50 Feeling 40 

Last week, I thought I was going to miss the structure of my professional wardrobe.  I carefully selected a look every day to wear into the office and to be ready on a moment’s notice if called into a leadership meeting.  While I do not believe in going completely grungy for work at home, I am loving what I will call my “casual chic” styles.  Today I am wearing older Chico’s Travelers pieces that I have owned a long time and are so perfect for this current life I lead.  One thing I love about neutrals is that a tone-on-tone look can take a casual style up a notch to a more professional level.

Aerosole Snake Slides on Over 50 Feeling 40

 My Aerosole snake slides work so well for home.  They are not the shoes I would want to do large amounts of walking in, but for working here or going to the mail, they are perfect.  I would also wear them to lunch if I was allowed to go out to lunch!

I think out of all of  the Chico’s collections I own, more are of the Travelers  than any other.  They are comfy, yet, most maintain a chic look with the comfort.  This is a confident look for me and as I said confidence is powerful and I want to reflect it even when working at home.

I am a little apprehensive about using the word “casual” in the way I am dressing for my workdays now.  I do not want my visual messages online to be relaxed, disheveled, disorganized, or lackluster.  I would be horrified if my bosses assumed that I am sitting in front of the television with a box of candy in my lap! (Not during my workday anyway-Ha! Ha!). I am looking for that balance of casual chic which keeps me communicating strength and intelligence.

 

ONE LAST WORD

Succulents at home from Over 50 Feeling 40

The last thing I want to write today is that it is difficult to be a confident person and live in despair.  Confidence does breed hope and optimism for a bright future.  Confidence is not arrogance or pride.  It is contentment and strength.  My desire for all of you is to have confident, hopeful expectation for every day.

What lessons are you learning through this stretch of social distancing?  When are you most likely to feel despair setting in and how do you turn it around?  Please share any thoughts….

Now, let’s have some fun…for my Fabulous Finds slideshow today, I was in search of casual chic!  Let’s see if I found it. (OK…well maybe the fruit sweater isn’t chic, but I thought it was pretty cute!)

Thank you so much for being here… stay home…stay safe…stay hopeful, (be cozy) and…………

Remember, in our social distancing world, your smile is the way you send hugs!  

KEEP SMILING….and HUGGING!

By Pamela Lutrell

 

23 Comments

  1. You’re right Pam, it does make you rethink a lot of things, priorities being right up there at the top of the list. It seems like as we move through life, we just keep adding more and more “things” and sometimes even wear busyness like a badge of honor, at least I did. Then this mess happens and here we are, at first wandering around not knowing what to do, then gradually creating a new routine. Some things we did routinely were taken away overnight. It’s a huge readjustment and not always easy. But the answer is not to throw up our hands and accept defeat. It’s temporary, and as you said, we need to remain positive and forward looking. In spite of it being cold here and too early to think about switching over to spring/summer clothes, I figured might as well do it because by the time we can go out again, it will be time to wear these things. What I found was excess and I was not pleased. Too much stuff!! After a year of being retired, I can see now that I can do without a lot of my work clothes. I do volunteer, or did and will again, but don’t need all the suits and office clothes crowding my closet. They haven’t been worn and someone else can certainly use them, so some will be going to Goodwill, some to consignment. I just don’t need this much, OR want it. It’s been things like this that I’m learning. For me, excess is just causing stress. You know, when we’re busy running all over we don’t have time to just contemplate “things.” I’m trying to simplify my life and this is the perfect time to do it. Maybe at the end of this some positive changes will have become new habits!

    1. I am so ready to clean out stuff! I think I will have to take some official time off in order to really dive into closets and cabinets. But I know it will feel great to do it. Good for you for being proactive with your cleaning. Thanks Karen

    2. Dear Karen, what a nice post. I feel the same way. Now that I’m home 24/7 (except for a long daily walk), I realize how much excess of everything I have. I have got to downsize all of my “stuff”. I thought i was really good at it, but now realize even this amount is too much. Amy

  2. Hi Pam
    I love reading your blog everyday, it is a bright spot to my day. In New England it’s still too cold to wear spring clothes but your slideshows give me so many ideas for when it warms up. My husband and I each have large extended families. We ve been keeping in touch using Zoom. We get together remotely and it’s wonderful to “see and hear “ everyone.

  3. That outfit is perfect, Pam! I absolutely love it. As I’m working from home now, as most of us are, it’s really inspiring to see what you’re wearing and the options you’re sharing. I really appreciate your daily messages!

  4. We live in northern New Jersey and some days it’s really hard not to feel despair. The news is grim. But that’s when I try to really focus on the good things. My family is staying safe and healthy. We have our home and food and all the comforts we need. I don’t want to sound like Pollyanna, but I do believe you have to have hope and gratitude. When I’m feeling down, I try to get outside. Somehow seeing the signs of spring and hearing the birds makes me feel better.
    I’m tackling all the projects I never have the time to do and will not buy another short sleeved t-shirts for a long time! I can’t believe how many I have…yikes!!
    We do have this precious gift of time to reflect on what’s important and just enjoying being. We need need to take advantage of it!
    Happy Wednesday and stay safe!

    1. I know things are tough in New Jersey, Linda. Thank you for sharing that is your home and please continue to stay safe. Praying for you!

  5. Thank you fir coming into our home each day! Pam you really do represent beauty class and style no matter the situation. I love the slideshows and if course to perk into your busy life.
    You are truly a remarkable woman!

  6. Your outfit hits just the right note of comfortable, casual chic. Looking good & being comfortable aren’t mutually exclusive, as you have proven. I, too, am a creature of habit, so some of the adjustments have been difficult for me. I have been journaling each day to help me keep my perspective, & through my daily scripture reading & devotions God has been meeting right where I am at my deepest fears & giving me encouragement. On a lighter note, the fruit sweater is so fun, & I think we could use some right now!

  7. Good Morning 🌼
    I just want to share a concept I used to discuss with my piano students regarding time management. Often, the children would admit they had not “found the time” to practice from one week to the next. In spite of using a practice log and stickers, incentives, etc., it was a problem. I wanted to help them learn to appreciate where their time was really going, hoping not only to solve the practice time issue, but also hopefully teaching an important life skill in the process. I would draw a circle and to the side we would list all the things they spent time doing. We would talk about how many hours each of these tasks or pastimes took in the course of a week. Sleep, eat, bathe, watch t.v., play outside, school, homework. It all went into the calculation, and then we would use colored pencils to fill in what became their personal pie chart. You should have seen the utter shock on their young faces as they saw the remaining space, sometimes representing as much as 15 or 20 unaccounted-for hours! Then I would say, with a very even tone, but slight smile . . . ” I believe we’ve found some practice time!” 😉 It worked every time, and I was proud to find my students became capable of juggling very active sports, school and extracurricular schedules with a level of maturity and self responsibility that was beyond their years.
    So, if kids can do this, so can we.

  8. Such an uplifting post once again. We are fortunate that spring is here on Vancouver Island, which means I can get outside in the sunshine. Otherwise, I think I would be feeling trapped sometimes! Love your casual chic, and it definitely is my style too. The floaty cardigans are my favourite.

    1. Enjoy that sunshine. I think we are going to have nicer weather…meaning less humid…this weekend. Thanks for being here, Christine.

  9. Oh, yes. Lessons. I was talking with a friend yesterday about this (by phone, of course!). She & her husband retired about a month after my husband & I retired almost 3 years ago. All 4 of us had list after list of things we we’d postponed over a lifetime of saying “When I retire….” And all 4 of us had a very hard time transitioning from working crazy hours at hard, rewarding jobs we loved to being routine- & schedule-free. It took my husband & me over a year to get comfortable in our new life. We quickly realized we need routine to keep us on track. Not as regimented as we’d once needed to be to juggle careers & home, but a framework to our days to keep us focused. My husband had his own engineering consultancy firm & I was an engineer with a big company, plus we both had hobbies we’ve since turned into new careers without really planning to do so, so we had some adapting to do. What I’m seeing now is people dealing with these changes BEFORE retirement & I want to encourage everyone to pay attention during this time to what is drawing you & what you’re glad to be rid of & how you’re defining your new days. And then use that as a blueprint for your actual retirement. With luck, you won’t have to waste a year trying to find your footing like we did 🙂

  10. Thanks for this post Pam, your outfit is delightful. I have to admit that I’m still much more casual during this WFH time, and I don’t mind. I still feel confident, I”m enjoying the freedom that all of my co-workers around the globe are equally casual. It brings me such joy to connect with my teams globally to see how we’re all fighting the same battles against this virus. I also am working to control what I can. I’ve stopped watching the news all together, it’s just too fraught with the negative side. Yes, the big cities are seeing terrible events, and we saw this in China, where there is a HUGE concentration of people, transmission will be higher. But I can only control what’s in my sphere of influence. So i choose to workout, eat healthy, meditate, do Bible study, and create something everyday! Creating something is my escape and it can be a card, scrapbook page, candy bouquet that gets dropped on a porch to someone that needs it. Thanks for your positive spirit.

  11. Pam: You mention having clothes for years; I am struggling with organizing my closet. Do you have any great suggestions?

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