Lifestyle

Working From Home With... By Sarah London’s Lauren Murrell

By Francine Heath
11.05.20

In the latest of our 'Working From Home With...' series, By Sarah London's Lauren Murrell shares a special, personal story about her own experiences in isolation, as well as some of the little tips and tricks that have helped her maintain a positive outlook throughout her journey.

 

For many of us, the challenges of lockdown have presented a newfound appreciation of some of life’s tiny pleasures - like grabbing a coffee with friends or long hugs with family. For Lauren Murrell, who runs the plant-powered skincare brand By Sarah London with her sister, this period of staying home has been a reminder of what she learnt while in extreme protective isolation at the age of 23 when she was being treated in hospital for myeloid leukaemia (AML) - a very aggressive type of blood cancer. The many moments of stillness during her recovery gave her the time to really think about her path going forward and develop the ability to find joy in things that can be taken for granted, such as the feeling of warm sunshine on our skin. In today’s interview, she reveals how walks in the park with birds chirping in the background still feel magical, and the importance of small daily rituals to uplift our spirit. 

How does your typical day start now that you’re working from home?

Come rain or shine, my day starts with the same three things. Applying a few drops of our Organic Facial Oil, with some light facial massage to wake up my skin and boost circulation. A fruit smoothie, blended with banana, berries, honey, milled seeds and coconut milk. And five minutes on my yoga mat, even if half of that is just in Child's Pose some mornings - it's just about getting on the mat.

What do you choose to wear?

Athleisure is my go-to, even more so at the moment. You'll most likely see me in cosy leggings and T-shirt, though if it gets a little cold, on goes my vintage 100% cashmere cardigan that I've had for years because it feels like I'm wearing a hug. I've recently noticed I have a lot of blue in my wardrobe, so I guess that's my signature colour.

 

How do you structure your day?

Having a routine and structure is so important. One tip I have is to write down what you need to do the night before. That way, you start the day with a plan and even though it's likely to shift a bit, it can save you from hours in your inbox, when there are other priorities you need to work on. I schedule time to catch up with Sarah (my sister and co-founder) as well as calling my family and friends. And I take a walk round the park every day. Taking some time to bask in the sounds and spring fragrances of nature is incredibly refreshing after hours of being inside at home. There's rarely a typical working day, but each one is filled with helping customers, developing marketing strategies, discussing new product ideas with Sarah, overseeing the commercial side to the business... the list goes on!

Do you have a designated work space at home right now? 

My work space overlooks the street with trees that were just in full bloom of cherry blossoms and magnolias, which was beautiful. I love how I feel connected with daily life as I see people come and go through the day. 

What helps you to stay positive and motivated?

I absolutely love what I do and no day feels like a chore; we have the most amazing By Sarah community and they bring us so much joy and support, particularly during these challenging times. I'm very aware of the power that your environment has and so I'm really conscious of curating this with lots of plants, natural light and some of my favourite and guiding mantras: 'Live life as if everything is rigged in your favour.'

Any recommendations of things to do when work stops and downtime begins?

Getting in the kitchen and using your evening to cook from scratch is a great way to unwind - our go to is Deliciously Ella for plant-based inspiration. I've loved reading Dr Chatterjee's ‘Feel Better in 5’ book with some great 'health snacks' you can tap into at the end of the day. And for fitness, it has to be Joe Wicks. His energy and passion is very motivating if you want to burn off some steam at the end of the day, or a quick cardio blast in the afternoon. 

What has been the most surprising thing so far for you about working in isolation?

Being in isolation is something I've experienced before when I was in extreme protective isolation during treatment for leukaemia (you can read more in my interview with Vogue). That experience taught me the importance of routine and curating a motivating environment, as well as finding joy in the often overlooked moments of our day, like taking the time to notice the sounds of the birds or the sun on your skin. The current situation has given me the opportunity to revisit that experience and remember the positives that can come from it - and sharing this and helping others has been totally unexpected, but equally rewarding.

 

See how Birdsong's Susanna Wren and Oramai's Isabella Broden have been finding a quarentine routine that works for them.

Learn more about Sarah and Lauren Murrell's journey to creating natural skincare brand By Sarah London

See how the Eco-Age team are staying positive while working from home

Working From Home With... By Sarah London’s Lauren Murrell