Irene Forte on working from home
As both the Rocco Forte Hotels’ Director of Wellness and the founder of a successful skincare line, Irene Forte works hard both within the family business and on her own. To find out what a day in the life of an expert in personal wellness and wellbeing looks like when working from home, we’ve asked her to share more on her routine – and how to be similarly productive whilst caring for oneself.
You spend a lot of time travelling for work, but when you’re at home, where do you work?
“I work from my kitchen table.”
How do you prepare yourself mentally for a productive day?
“I shower whilst listening to the news, and then carry out my morning skincare regime. I start the morning with a bit of water and the Almond Cleansing Milk. I then splash the Helichrysum Hyaluronic Toner on and pat my skin to boost circulation, balance the pH of my skin, and remove the calc from London water. Following this, I use the Hibiscus Serum. I never miss the serum step. The Almond Eye Cream comes next and then I usually finish with the Aloe Vera or the Prickly Pear Face Cream. The nice thing about being at home is no make-up!
I’ll then eat breakfast, whilst going through my calendar and my to-do list to prepare for the day to come. I usually have two boiled eggs with a piece of rye bread, and a latte with almond milk.
I’m then ready to work!”
How do you set up an environment that’s conducive to calm and concentration?
“I ensure everything is tidy and organised around me; I don’t like mess or clutter. I like listening to jazz or some easy music whilst working too.”
What does your dietary routine look like when you’re at home?
“My diet remains the same whether at home or working in the office. I eat very clean food. I’ve mentioned my breakfast above. For lunch I'll have a quinoa salad with some nuts and seeds, pulses and a few greens. I’m trying to set a rule to take 30 minutes and eat away from my computer. For dinner I usually I eat fish, some kind of pulse or roasted vegetables, and if not pulses, a grain like quinoa or bulgur wheat. I’ll always throw in a cube or two of dark chocolate at the end and have a herbal tea. For snacking, I love Brazil nuts, and I tend to have quite a few of these throughout the day. Generally, I like snacking on all nuts and seeds throughout the day. I also always have some dark chocolate (between 70% & 85%).”
Do you find particular types of food make a difference to your performance? Is there anything you find should be avoided?
“I would avoid heavy foods, and too many sugary treats. I would focus on daily consumption of vegetables, fruits, whole grains and healthy fats.”
How do you keep yourself motivated throughout a long day?
“Good snacks and breaks throughout the day, as well as a 30-minute lunch away from my computer.”
What do you find is the best way to switch off and unwind at the end of the day?
“I will do some kind of at-home work-out at about 6.30pm. Usually I follow a work-out on YouTube or a live Instagram Yoga session.
I also love having a good body and face skincare regime. I like having bath the Fortifying Magnesium soak by Nature of Things. I will also body brush in the bath, and then finish by moisturising with my Rose or Orange Blossom Body Oil. For my face, I use the same cleanser and toner that I use in the morning. I then use the Hibiscus Serum, followed by the Almond Eye Cream. I will then use the Hibiscus Night Cream or the Rose or Orange Blossom Face Oil with some self-massage techniques. Sometimes I’ll also add a layer of the Hyaluronic Acid Vial before. Or, if my skin is feeling quite dry, I put on the Pistachio Face Cream overnight instead of the Night Cream.
Then, 10 minutes of reading before bed gets me nice and ready to go to sleep.”
Can you share any mental health tips for those working at home to whom it might be a new concept?
“I would just say that keeping a regular routine is important. Then, I firmly believe, that sleep is the key to your wellbeing. For good sleep, go to bed and wake up at the same time of day no matter what; try not to exercise right before bed; avoid stimulants like coffee or foods high in sugar a few hours before bedtime; avoid phones, tablets and laptops, cutting out exposure to Blue Light, before bedtime; avoid medicines that delay or disrupt your sleep; create a relaxing night-time ritual.”