Updated: May 24, 2020
Have you recently transitioned to working from home and unsure how to make it work? Here are a few hints and tips on how to make it a success.
1. Dedicate a space solely to your work - If you are lucky enough to have a home office, study or even a desk, great! If not, can you set something up? Take up a corner of the table. The space needs to be comfortable, well lit, have great air flow and preferably minimal distraction (yes, you working Mumma's are scoffing at that bit whilst someone is screaming for snacks and the TV is blaring). Having a dedicated space will help your mindset turn on and off work-mode when needed.
2. Dress for the occasion - I know how easy it is to fall into the habit of t-shirt, leggings, no makeup and messy bun on top of your head but I guarantee you that if you make an effort, you'll feel so much better. You'll also look and feel more professional on those video calls. It's a mind trick where you tell it that you're ready for business!
3. Maintain a routine - Adhere to the start and finish times, take the required amount of breaks and continue to split your day up like you would in the office. Don't do anything outside your 'work hours' and try not to sit on the couch watching Netflix in your breaks. I find short breaks work well for me so I'll duck into the laundry and put a load of clothes on then I'm back at my desk working away. Be sure to shut everything down, switch everything off and leave your work space at the end of the day. Unless you are saving lives, it can wait till tomorrow!
4. Break it up - Breaks are so important both physically and mentally. I make sure I have a few breaks during the day rather than one long one. A coffee break in the garden in the morning. Lunch on the patio. 10 minutes of yoga stretches and a snack in the afternoon. If I'm feeling really restless, a quick power walk around the block always helps too. All of this clears my head, loosens my muscles and helps me refocus till my next break.
5. Communicate - Working from home can be so isolating. Especially when you are like me and have just come from working with 50+ people in a 2 storey building. Make it a point to pick the phone up rather than send that message if possible. Schedule video calls. Do welfare checks on colleagues or friends. Interact with other human beings at any chance you get. We are all in this together!
6. Have fun! - What helps you focus on work? Loud music? Podcasts? Silence? Candles burning? You are no longer restricted by sitting in an office so make yourself comfortable, have fun and get to work!
Disclaimer: Yes, I am wearing pants and slippers, drinking coffee and have done my makeup and brushed my hair today ;) Today is a good day!