Due to the closing of many establishments in hopes of slowing the spread of the coronavirus, many people are trying out a lifestyle they had never taken part in before - working from home. Under different circumstances, working from home is considered lucky, but it's hard to feel that way when there is a global pandemic underway. If you are fortunate enough to be able to continue your work from home, the following are some ways to help you adjust to the change and to maintain productivity:
Start by grabbing your favorite get-things-done drink!
If you’re going to be working from home, it’s essential that you have everything you need - passwords into accounts, access to specific software, calls wired to the correct number, and whatever else. Set yourself up with the right supplies so you can get the job done right from the beginning.
Stick to a Schedule.
Try to maintain somewhat of the same schedule. Get started and end around the same time every day, following your regular hours. Keep your body in the flow of waking up to an alarm and following your basic routine.
Set up a home office.
Sometimes it helps if you have an office-like setting to get you in the mood for working. If you don’t have an office or desk to work on, the kitchen table is always acceptable, or set up an old card table somewhere. Sitting up at a table will help you be more productive (and awake) than relaxing on the couch.
Tune out the distractions.
If you don’t normally work with a TV or music on, don’t start now! Just because you’re home does not mean the TV has to be on. Whatever is going to tempt you, move away from. Obviously kids or pets can’t be ignored, but if you can establish some sort of “tranquil work zone,” you’ll be more likely to focus. Try to replicate your environment at work the best you can.
A big part of working from home is being easily accessible. If a co-worker, your boss, or a client calls, you need to answer; if they email, you need to have a timely response. Working from home does not mean you lay on the couch eating potato chips. You’re working. From home. Be available to those who need you.
Take breaks like normal.
It’s possible to drain yourself or hit a wall, even from home. Make sure you’re taking regular little breaks to refresh and revive your brain and energy.
Track your time.
If you’re hourly or project-based, it may be helpful to track your time with a software. See where your time is going - for your own sake, your boss’s, and your clients’. It will keep you accountable and on top of things.
Working from home can take some adjusting, but once you find your groove, you'll find ways to work more efficiently and maximize your productivity. Good luck!