Working from home was a trend slowly on the rise. Enter COVID-19 and suddenly, it’s the norm. The luxury of a slow, smooth transition is out the window. Everyone is learning as they go — with mixed results.
Thanks to incredible technological advances, working at home has never been easier. The next part involves avoiding pitfalls and then conjuring up your own routine. Sure, it will have its tricky moments but, through trial and error, the transformation can be easier than you may imagine.
Pitfalls to Avoid When Working at Home
Without the presence of a boss, it can feel way too easy to lose focus. Time management is of the essence.
Lack of Routine or Schedule
For years, you’ve been relying on the workday rhythms for your structure. Now, the onus is on you. Lock into a routine to keep your day better organized.
Blurring the Lines Between Work/Housework
Of course, some chores may be urgent — especially if you have kids home with you. Otherwise, don’t overdo the multi-tasking. Remember, you’re at work!
Lack of Communication
Whoever else is sheltering in place with you deserves clear communication. Don’t assume you’re all on the same page. Talk it out —regularly.
5 Smart Strategies to Make Working at Home Work for You
1. Learn Your Equipment
Take time to learn the ins and outs of whatever equipment you’re using to work at home. Take care of your gear and do whatever preventative maintenance it requires. Connect with your IT team, if possible, to let them know if you have any special needs.
2. Choose a Dedicated Workspace
It’s mighty tempting to lounge wherever your mood leads you. As time passes, this may work for you. For now, create a dedicated home office for yourself and stick to it. This will create some much-needed continuity to your new work life.
3. Schedule in Movement Breaks
Global pandemics have a way of stressing us out, huh? Not only are you reinventing your work life but you’re also worried about avoiding infection. Help manage this stress by scheduling in a few daily breaks during which you can exercise, stretch, and simply breathe.
4. Remember What You Complain About at Work
At every workplace, employees have their gripes. We all know what we would do differently if we had the power. Well, here’s your chance to implement a couple of those ideas. From what you wear to when you take breaks to where you sit, you suddenly have more control than you ever had. Make the most of it.
5. Resist Breaking News
The headlines these days are enough to upset anyone. At a traditional job, you may choose to talk through some of your concerns with co-workers. Working at home does not allow for that option. Therefore, it’s a self-loving choice to resist taking news breaks during work hours. The updates will be there waiting for you when you’re done. There’s no need to add more tension to an already daunting situation.
You Can Get Help From Home, Too!
As touched on a few times above, this situation has been forced upon us. You are left trying to juggle a near-total lifestyle change and the inherent fears of a global crisis. It should come as no surprise if the transition is messing with your head.
No one should be expected to figure it out without some assistance. There’s no shame in asking for help. Fortunately, the same devices that turn your living into a workplace can turn it into a therapist’s office.