Working from home seems like a dream for most people, but most don’t realize that staying productive while working from home can be extremely challenging. With the onset of a global pandemic, millions of people who have never worked from home were abruptly forced to do just that. Many who are used to office life and know no other way of working have struggled to adjust.
I have been home for 51 days now and while it has been challenging at times, I have loved and enjoyed working from home. In a WFH environment I thrive and my productivity is through the roof. My past experiences with working from home at previous jobs, made the transition pretty easy for me. Here are a few tips that have helped me find a balance in a work from home environment.
I’m not talking about wearing your office attire at home. Get up, get showered, have breakfast and then change out of your pajamas. Dress comfortably and casually. I’m usually in a t-shirt and shorts because that’s what is comfortable for me.
Create a Comfortable Work Space.
It can be extremely tempting to work from your laptop in bed, or to lounge on the couch. But creating a space that is separate from where you spend your leisure time helps with separating work; from home and leisure in your mind. If you don’t have the luxury of a separate room or home office, carve out a space for working only. I set up a workspace at my dining table that is strictly for work and all of my items that I need are in that space and organized.
Work Regular Hours & stick to your schedule.
This is important, even though you are working from home it is still very possible to have a work, life balance. I work the same schedule I worked while I was in office. It’s tempting to send “one last email” or just “finish this one last thing”. Learn to shut work mode off.
Don’t stay glued to the computer for 8 hours straight. Schedule a few breaks into your day. Get up and walk around, stretch, do whatever you need to do. Give your mind time to rest and then get back to work.
Working from home lacks the structure that is common in an office environment. Creating a list helps to keep you on task and remind you of what needs to get done.
Some of you are at home with children or your entire family. This can pose a major challenge and create distractions for you. Let people know that you will be working certain hours and not to interrupt you unless it’s extremely important or an emergency.
Keep In Touch.
The thing that people find to be the most challenging is lack of social interaction. People who have been forced to work from home because of COVID-19 have reported feeling isolated. Try to touch base with friends and colleagues as needed. Make time to connect with others and catch up with the people you care about.
These are tricks that help me to stay focused and productive while working from home. Ultimately the best way to work from home depends on what works best for you. Have you been working from home since the start of Covid-19? How has this change of environment affected you and your productivity? Did any of these tips help you? Let me know in the comments.