We can’t operate the office as normal, but we can still work together in figuring out how to work from home! Some of my days are intensely productive; while others make me question how I’m a functioning adult–it’s all hit or miss. For those of us who aren’t used to working from home, we can experience a shift in our work style. This takes time and an understanding of personal habits and distractions. For me, I cannot be near a TV or other people. I have found working outside or at my desk are my most productive areas. Hopefully these tips below will help you figure out your best habits.
Value Your Morning Routine
Whether you had a routine before quarantine or not, find ways to value your mornings–before you start working. I personally enjoy reading while having a cup of coffee. It sets my mind in a mode that’s ready to write and create. Whether it’s reading, exercising, or cleaning, find what sets you up to focus. Also, I’m sure you’ve heard this time and time again, but get dressed! Dress for a normal day and try to create a similar work environment to what you would go into. Maybe leave off the tie or blazer–unless you have a video call–but dress nice and be comfortable!
If you are really struggling with maintaining your focus at home, try work sprints. Although they’re helpful in your pre-quarantine routine as well, they are especially important during this time. A work sprint is a set of time where you are heads-down on a task. Whether it’s 20 minutes or 40 minutes, set your time and stay focused. Maintaining productivity in a different environment isn’t easy, and that is okay to acknowledge. However, there have to be adjustments made to your schedule, and it will get better in time. Check out Toggl and Tomato Timer to help you keep track of your sprint!
Keep Your Schedule
Although we’re in a shift in work, try to maintain your regular schedule: when you start work, take breaks, and end your day. Life isn’t perfect, so you cannot expect your day to work exactly like it did before. However, trying to have a sense of a regular schedule can also help your focus and productivity. It’s important to make sure you have a way to separate your work and life–especially when you’re at home.
All of these steps are works in progress. This is a strange time and we need to work hard in different ways. Although none of this is ideal, there will be positive outcomes if we allow them. Working from home causes a lot of change in perspective, but we can all do this together!