Because of the spread of the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, many individuals are now telecommuting or working remotely for the first time. This disruption to your normal routine can be very stressful. Unanticipated distractions can make productivity while working from home difficult. Below are some tips that may help you adjust to working from home.
- Stick as closely as possible to your normal routine. You may not be leaving the house, but waking up at your usual time and completing your normal morning routine can help put you in the right mindset for work. This is especially important for families with children, as routines are important to the wellbeing of your kids.
- Set time boundaries for your work and stick to your normal working hours if possible. Don’t work over your scheduled hours.
- Have a designated space to complete your work in. Keep this space separate from where you spend your non-work time. A clean, organized workspace can promote productivity. For some, setting up a home workspace in a similar manner to their regular workspace can be helpful. This way, when the workday is done you can leave work behind by moving to a different area.
- Set boundaries to discourage interruptions. Let family or housemates know when your work hours are and what your workspace will be. Noise-cancelling headphones can be helpful for tuning out distracting sounds.
- Set realistic work goals for how much work you can complete while working from home and possibly caring for children who are also home from school. Technology is key. Make sure that you have the bandwidth to handle working from home. Set up a schedule for internet time for the kids to avoid disrupting any video conference meetings you need to attend.
- Constant communication! In this time of social distancing people are connecting virtually. Use video conferencing or chat to stay in touch with your coworkers. A webcam is a great tool to keep you in contact with coworkers and make meetings easier. Talk with your manager about their expectations and any limitations to your work while working from home.
- Combat cabin fever with breaks. Taking breaks like you would in the workplace is important for both your sanity and your vision. Eyes need a break from screen time. Go outside for a short walk or spend time gardening.