15 tips to create positive working-from-home experiences
Want to stay as productive as possible when working from home? Then try these tips...
1. Get into a routine
We’re creatures of habit and our brains like routine. Set your alarm for the same time every day, eat breakfast, and get ready for the day – even if it’s just to wander a few feet to your workspace.
2. Get changed every morning
As tempting as it is, it creates a psychological block to stay in your PJs. And past 10am can feel a bit depressing.
3. Stay in touch
Communication and community are key. Especially if you live alone. Don’t be shy about telling your manager what you need. Try scheduling virtual lunches, or 20 minutes to enjoy a coffee and just chat.
4. Treat yourself kindly
Your health mentally and physically should be paramount. Although you might not be able to get out and about, it’s still important to keep active and healthy. Try exercising, meditating, cooking fresh food.
5. Get comfortable
Create a designated “workspace” or office within your home (and make it a space where you like spending time!)
Find a place that is comfortable and can be mostly dedicated to work. This will allow for less distractions from home/life and will allow you to turn off work and focus or be present in life when you’re not working.
6. Be mindful of your social media consumption
Reduce the amount of social media and news you consume at home. Try to check the news once a day. And only to trusted news sources. It’s easy to get sucked into a rabbit hole, which can make you feel wretched and stressed.
7. Use one screen at a time
Multi-tasking is no easy feat. Be wary of having more than one screen on the go. It’s best to limit your exposure to screens. Especially important when the day has no definitive start and end.
8. Get outside (if you can)
Try to have a view outdoors, or walk by a view every 40 min even if it means staying inside. It’s good to get out and get some exercise if you can, but obviously only if it’s socially responsible to do so.
9. Set your working hours (start and end time)
This will allow others to count on you during that time AND for you to turn off work without the guilt that it is ‘always there’.
10. Get to know your co-workers
Tour your house/apartment. Have a meet and greet of the family/kids/pets/roommates. Treat it as an opportunity to get to know your team better and bond over your shared love of dogs/cats/miniature poodles.
11. Break up the day
Take clear breaks. Use your breaks to get away from your desk or work station. And don’t work right through from dawn to dusk. You may feel like you’re on a roll, but you’ll soon burn out without regular breaks.
12. Block off time to work
If you don’t, your day could easily be filled with endless video conferencing calls.
13. Make the most of the tools available
Use your calendar to schedule what you’ll do and when you’ll do it over the course of your day.
14. Set boundaries
This will stop work creeping into your home life. Pick a definitive finishing time each day and make sure the people you work with regularly are aware of it. If you want to have a (socially responsible) walk once a day at noon then pop it in your calendar so people know. Or communicate when you’ll be available and when you won’t be.
15. Recognize we’re living (and working) in unusual times
You may get anxious and stressed at times, and that’s okay. It’s normal. The most important thing is to communicate as much as possible about how you’re feeling and ask your team to do the same.
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