Are you currently finding your feet with new working from home arrangements?
With the recent developments of the coronavirus (COVID-19) we have seen businesses take measures never seen before with all employees working from home, split roster working from home basis and other precautions.
Firstly it is important to acknowledge we are all feeling an extreme variety of frustration, uncertainty, anxiety and unease – you are not alone! Feel free to read an earlier blog here of how this is already affecting people mentally and physically.
I have been working from home (WFH) for myself consistently for 3 years now. Prior to that I was WFH on and off with flexible work arrangements for other companies. As soon as I tell people I work from home and I love it they ask ‘how do you discipline yourself to work from home?’ ‘how do you motivate yourself?’ and the list goes on…
Before we get into the tips of ‘how to work from home productively’, it is important to acknowledge we all run, act, think and work differently so first ask yourself:
- What distracts me most? (and eliminate)
- What motivates me with work / what do I most enjoy?
WARNING: once you implement these changes you may find you never want to go back to the office again.
HERE ARE 10 TIPS THAT CHANGE THE WORKING FROM HOME GAME:
The best part about working from home (WFH) or being your own boss is that you can structure your day in the way that works best for you. In my case, I am not a morning person, therefore I grant myself a sleep in everyday + I try to meditate before starting work. These simple adjustments make me feel overall happiness Monday to Sunday.
2. Create a positive working environment
I am really effected by my environment so when I started working from home I made sure I was working near windows, had greenery around (indoor plants are the best), invested in wall hanging whiteboards, calendars, comfortable chair etc. to help me create an inspiring space.
3. Schedule in calls throughout the day
When I know I might lose motivation or start feeling lazy I try and have calls or meetings scheduled in. This will also help with structure to complete tasks by a certain time each day.
4. Cluster tasks
Not only is planning out your tasks helpful but clustering tasks that are similar. Generally speaking this is a good habit and skill to learn that will increase productivity day to day (your boss will thank you for this one when you return to work). E.g. If you need to do social media posting, put aside a morning to do it all for the week. When clustering your tasks, it is important to ONLY DO THE 1 TASK, that means = close down emails and other screens to help you get the tasks done quicker with no distractions.
5. Limit social media access (unless it is part of your job)
There are plenty of apps that can help you monitor your screen time or certain apps you are on – see a list here.
6. Video check in calls
Whether you check in with colleagues, mentors or bosses do it via video to help break up the day and have some social interaction. When doing video calls it also helps you take a look at what you are wearing or how you look and feel (self check in is important when you work from home).
7. Reward yourself
Whether it is a walk in the fresh air, eat your favourite food or an episode of your favourite TV show for lunch. Break up the day and give yourself something to look forward to when you get your tasks done. Remember the first question I told you to ask yourself – what motivates me with work and makes me happiest? That is where this comes into play.
8. Embrace what you feel
There will be days when you feel like writing on your laptop in bed (currently what I am doing as I write this blog). But you know what stuff is getting done, doesn’t matter what you look like or where you are, you have permission to have lazy days as long as you are at home and safe.
At the end of the day tell yourself, friend or house mate what you appreciate about your day working from home. Make the most of it, look for the positives and appreciate the time you have in the moment you are in E.g. I am thankful I got to cook my lunch at home today.
10. Listen to what you love
Turn on the music that you love most, with no colleagues or bosses to tell you to turn it down or change it. Next question to ask yourself ‘what music makes you happy’? And thats all that matters.
Since the Coronavirus Crisis I have even noticed that I have been going outside less and finding it hard to adapt to the changes we are faced with – this is coming from someone who has been working from home a while now. It is hard for all of us so give yourself a chance to accept and adapt in whatever way you can to the new working conditions and environment.
See this as an opportunity to learn more about yourself and develop a skill you may never have known existed.
Like me, I am taking the opportunity to write more and improve my blogs and how I communicate and help others – how did I do? 🙂