Work From Home is the now only way a lot of us are working! I realised that for me social distancing hasn’t been hard on the work front because I work about 3 – 6 hours a day at home, depending on my teaching schedule. I do remember transitioning from an office environment to working at home being challenging, and that was without a global pandemic in the mix. So here are some hard learned lessons on working from home.
works for you.
Have a schedule or daily routine.
When you’re home and there’s no manager or boss around, the options of what to do seem endless. Unless you live with your boss or manager… Then work from home could look a little different for you. If you limit those options and plan your day, it’s setting yourself up success.
On a side note, your idea of a successful day could be just getting through your day’s task and the work you have to do. I’ve seen so many posts online calling for people to be their most productive selves, write a novel, learn a new skill, start a new business, take an online degree- for some people that motivation will get them through. Some people need to disappear into work to cope. If that’s not you, just focus on the basic tasks and being kind to yourself and those around you.
Here’s a quick example
6:00 wake up and meditate
6:15 mindful movement
6:45 hit the shower
7:00 get dressed.
7:15 tidy your bedroom
7:45 tidy kitchen
8:00 get to work
10:30 30 minute break
11:00 creative time
13:30 work some more
15:00 take a walk
15:30 admin time
17:00 you are now allowed to switch on TV or Netflix and chill.
Maybe on day 1 and 2 of quarantine or self isolation, wearing pj’s and tracksuit pants on a Tuesday was a fun novelty. That’s OK. But it does affect your mindset and you do still have work to do so not being dressed for the part changes thst. Put on a real outfit even if no one sees it. Something comfortable yet professional that helps you get in mood for working, not chilling. Think casual Friday vibes.
Where you work
Set up an actual work from home station. Do you know that if you work on your bed, the mind starts to associate your bed with work more than sleep. Right now, you may to share your living space with your work space but aim to sit at a desk or table rather than on the couch. This is another psychological hack or trick to get you in the mood for work when you need it.
Timing of tasks
This is a really great time figure out when you’re best at doing certain things through self observation. Scientific studies suggest that we are least creative in the afternoon, so trying to get tactile and paint or brain storm a new idea at 3pm might not be the best idea. We’re all different though so figure out what works and then adjust your schedule accordingly. This can really help when you work from home.
Figure out your attention span and give yourself breaks, unless you get into a Flow State and don’t need it. For me, I can go 45 minutes before I need to get up and walk around, have tea, play with the dog or have a random dance break. These work as rewards when I work from home.
I make note of the time when I sit down to work and mental tell myself that I’m allowed a break with a reward after 45 minutes. Dyring this time my cell phone is plugged into charge across the room so I d have to get my to answer a call or respond to a notification. I have headphones in, even if they aren’t playing anything, to signal that I won’t be having conversations. I make sure there’s water next to me and I have dedicated focus for that time.
Have designated times for TV, social media and YouTube.
These things are great if used correctly but if not, they can steal your time. I’m quarantine with my parents and the first day or two of self isolation, while we were still adjusting to Covid19 being on the rise in South Africa’s my mom had the news on for a few hours day. This continued until day 2 of national lockdown when I found that as much as I wanted to stay up to date and well informed, I was distracted and it was making me unhappy and frankly quite paranoid. My dad also likes to watch TV during work breaks- if he gets them between phone calls. Being if their home, I asked as respectfully as possible if we could watch new during lunch for 30 minutes and then switch the TV back on after 17:00 if we wanted to. They agreed and my mom even asked if we could make Sunday a ‘No News’ day which has helped so much.
I truly hope that some of these suggestions help you. What are you doing to adjust to Work From Home life?