In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, a lot of us are experiencing the challenges of working from home for the first time. Here are some helpful tips!
Create a daily schedule and stick to it! When working from home some people take no breaks and others take too many breaks! Every day define your start time, end time and regular breaks to allow yourself to step away from your computer screen. If you struggle to take breaks from work you can use apps such as TimeOut to lock yourself out of your computer for a specific time. If you struggle to return from breaks, try and schedule your break to end when you have to return for a meeting or task.
This tip is simple, but crucial. Don’t give in to the temptation of rolling out of bed and working in your pyjamas. The physical act of changing your clothes serves as a signal that it’s time to get things done.
If you are cohabiting, make sure you set up boundaries with your living companions to limit your disruptions. Be upfront and transparent with when you would like to be left alone. You’ll thank yourself later for it!
SET UP A DESIGNATED WORKSPACE
When you’re working in an office each day there is a physical separation between home and work and you want to try and replicate that as much as possible when working from home. If you don’t have a separate room for a home office you can set a designated spot on the end of the dining table, kitchen bench or another area that has some natural light. Don’t work from your bed or the couch!
CREATE A ROUTINE
To further differentiate work time from leisure time, set up a routine that delineates the start of work and the end of work. For example, your morning routine may consist of going for a run, making a coffee and then starting work. You afternoon routine may be turning off your email notifications and a yoga class.
Humans are social creatures so working from home can be a big adjustment as there are no in-person interactions with colleagues. Good communication has never been so important. Where possible, opt for calls over long email chains as it is more time efficient and less likely to be misunderstood. It is also a good idea to schedule occasional video calls with your colleagues to help curb the feelings of isolation. We recommend using Zoom!