During lockdown and as the whole world adjusts, one of the biggest changes many people are trying to get used to is working from home(and with the kids off school!)
Whilst facing many challenges such as keeping motivated, focused, and learning how to use new technology to communicate with colleagues, here are some tips to help keep your work/home life balanced and your sanity intact.
Dress and act as though you are going to the office
Try and stick to your usual routine. Whilst you may get to spend a little longer in bed due to no commuting it’s still important to get up, get dressed for work and set up a space to work in. Try and avoid working in your bedroom if possible and sit at a table to ensure you have good posture.
Structure your day
When working from home you must manage yourself and your productivity, and those in your team if you have one. The night before, write down a ‘to do’ list and goals for the next day. This way you will have focus and clarity from the minute you start work rather than wasting time in the morning. Set times for coffee breaks and lunch.
In the office your day is broken up by everything from meetings to water-cooler chats, lunch breaks and even toilet breaks, but when you are sat at home on your own with no face-to-face interaction planned it can be easy to just work for long, unbroken periods.
In order to be productive, impose structure on yourself. For example, working in 60 min chunks of focused work followed by a short break can be an effective way to break the day up and maintain your concentration levels.
Think about how you can add value to the business and your team
What could you do to define a problem and find a solution to help your business stay afloat through the lockdown. At times like these it’s essential for all employees to think of the business as if it was their own. How can you help, how can you add value? Lockdown is a good time to do some online courses that could help you in your job.
Stay in contact
If you had regular team meetings then these should continue but via apps such as Zoom or Microsoft Teams. If meetings aren’t something you usually do then now is definitely the time to start. Meetings are a good opportunity to check in with colleagues, make sure everyone is coping ok and set and agree objectives.
Working from home when everyone else is at home will almost definitely result in interruptions. Employers should understand if a child appears on camera during a video meeting. Learn to accept this and say hello! If the doorbell rings during the meeting its no big deal, just carry on.
Lockdown rules allow for one brief period of outdoor exercise a day, so make the most of it. Apart from the obvious physical health benefits, recent studies have found that exercise lifts your mood and helps depression and anxiety.
End of your workday
Close your laptop and put it away once you have finished your workday. Keeping that worklife/homelife balance is crucial. Although you can’t leave the office when working from home, you can keep a lid on it so it doesn’t interfere with home life.