How to Conquer Working from Home
Over the last year and a half millions of jobs have been affected by the COVID-19 Virus and millions of people have either been furloughed, laid off or had their businesses shut down. For many others they’ve had to make the transition from office work to working from home. Working from home, for many, seems like the norm as they don’t seem easily distracted and can build that barrier between work and home life but for many others they struggle to find their footing. Being at home poses many challenges, you’re working in the comfort and privacy of your own space with your TV, your computer, your bed and nobody to look over your shoulder if you’re on your phone too much. But a lot of times your productivity is reflected in the work you do. So let’s go over some things you can do to get the best out of yourself when working remotely.
Set A Routine and Stick To It
Aside from getting out of bed, brushing your teeth and taking a shower to start the day. Add other key components to your morning routine. For example, try to get dressed as if you’re going into the office. Studies have shown that getting out of the comfort of your pajamas or sweatpants and into some work clothes increases productivity as it gives you a sense of “work” and not “home”.
Make sure you are giving yourself enough time to eat breakfast and meditate before you start your day. Waking up and going straight to doing work not only will result in you wearing down your mind but you won’t be as sharp. This includes having a granola bar to hold you over while you write a report for a client, bad idea. Work is like sports, if your mind is on anything else other than executing a play then you won’t execute the play to the fullest. For example, let’s say you start work at 9AM.
Instead of waking up at 8:30am, wake up at 7:40am.
- 7:40am – 8am: This gives you 20 minutes to get up and get ready (brushing your teeth, showering, changing)
- 8am – 8:30am: take time to make and eat breakfast.
- 8:30am-8:50am: this is your meditation time, your time to drink your coffee and just get your mind ready for the day.
- 8:50am – 9am: you have 10 minutes to prep any work-related activities such as opening a tab or document etc.
To go along with the morning routine, you can add in a little bit of exercise. Replace your daily commute with a physical activity. If you’re not one for going on a run then something as simple as doing stretches for 5-10 minutes is enough to get the blood flow going. Going on a run however helps release endorphins which helps your overall mood and energy levels. Either way this is a good way to get your body and mind ready.
Take Care of your Mental
In the words of Marshawn Lynch, make sure to “take care of y’all mentals”. Working from home can take a huge toll on your mental health. Where you used to leave the house and be surrounded by people you’re now stuck inside and possibly don’t leave the house all week. Now, yes, leaving the house to go to work doesn’t seem like it was such a morale booster but it’s the act of getting out of the house and not feeling cooped up which helps the mind. So, make sure you are taking time to get out of the house, if you need to get out once in a while on your lunch break then take advantage of that time. Eat lunch on your patio or backyard. Check in on your colleagues and be upfront with your employer, if there is any help the company can extend to help you then it’s great to know what those resources are.
Make a Dedicated Workspace
The hardest thing about working from home is separating work from home. So, make sure you are assigning a dedicated workspace if you don’t have an office. This is preferably a space away from the family with little to no distractions.
This is going to be a hard one as working on a computer or with your phones are distractions in their own right, but eliminate the non-essential distraction. This includes TV, books, magazines and game consoles. Fight the urge to visit social media as taking one look at Instagram can turn into a 15-minute scroll-through which can lead to another 15 minutes on Facebook and so on. Do your best to stay disciplined and focused.
Working from home probably wouldn’t have been your first choice or even your second choice but for many it’s now their reality, so why not make the best of it? It can teach you how to be disciplined which in turn can help you when you go back to the office. So, follow those 5 Keys and take care of yourself during these hard times.