As as result of the Coronavirus, many of us will be working from home having never done so before. It’s tempting to sit back and treat it as a leisurely day or have a Netflix binge, but that can’t last forever.
Here are our top ten tips on working from home successfully and avoiding the pitfalls:
1 Get up and get dressed – Have a little lay in to take advantage of not having to commute, but still get up in time ready to start your day on time. Get out of your pyjamas and into some comfortable clothes so that you are in a working head space. Chances are we will all be having more video calls and no one wants to be caught in their Captain America pyjamas.
2 Pick a work space – at a desk, at the dining table, on the sofa – but make sure it is comfortable and make sure that you can have everything around you that you might need without having to get up all the time. If possible, do not work in your bedroom – if there is no separation between work and rest it can make it hard to get to sleep later.
3 Sign out at the end of the day – finish working from home at your usual time and shut up from the day by closing down your emails and turning off notifications on your devices so you can enjoy your evening.
4 Don’t work in silence – most work spaces and offices will have some noise happening, even if it’s just the tapping of keyboards, and working in total silence can be just as distracting as too much noise. Have music or television on in the background, but not something you are going to sing along to or stop working to watch.
5 Stick to your breaks – if you usually stop for lunch at a certain time or pop out for a cigarette at a set time then maintain that routine. It will help it seem more like a normal working day and keep you on track working at the correct times.
6 Maintain social contact – working in isolation for an extended period can be bad for your mental health so once you knock off make sure you call someone for a chat and keep yourself in the loop.
7 Schedule your household chores – don’t stop to randomly do household chores, you wouldn’t be able to if you weren’t at home. Do them during your scheduled breaks and lunchtime if you want to make the most of being at home, but don’t let them distract you.
8 Let everyone you live with know you are working – encourage them to not distract you or stop for a chat whenever they fancy it, and let people know when you are about to go on a call or video chat so they don’t walk passed or talk loudly in the background if possible.
9 Stay in touch with colleagues – it will let everyone know you are working and that you are checking they are working as well, therefore keeping everyone heading in the same direction.
10 Don’t sit still all day – no one stays totally all day at work, so don’t at home. Get up to make a drink, go into the garden, walk upstairs, move to the sofa for a bit. It’s important to stretch out and move to keep the blood flowing.
Stay safe and healthy everyone!