Many of us are facing a new reality of working from home – either full or part-time. At first glance this seems like a welcome change, but as time has gone by some have found stress and frustrations they hadn’t expected. So if you do find yourself working from home in some capacity, here are 4 tips to improve your work-from-home experience.
- Maintain normal working hours. When you’re working from home your office is always just a few steps away. While convenient, it doesn’t mean you need to be in work mode your entire day or work until 8pm. Stick to your normal schedule and save non-work related tasks until after your regular working hours. Make sure to take your regular lunch and other work breaks you are entitled to during your workday. And consider taking your coffee break and heading outside for some fresh air and exercise.
- Create a dedicated workspace. While anyone can throw a notebook computer onto the kitchen table for an afternoon, it can be extremely frustrating to try and work without enough space, proper lighting, and a decent chair. This doesn’t mean you need a full office in your home, but creating a private area that you can use just for work is highly recommended. Make sure your selected location has some natural light and a way to close the door for privacy or to help concentrate.
- Minimize distractions as much as possible. Closing a door to your work area can help, but also try to avoid distractions within your workspace, as well. This includes keeping televisions off, minimizing the use of your cell phone, and avoiding browsing the Internet or social media. At home, these services may not be blocked or monitored like at the office, so try and stick to your office routine.
- Socialize responsibly. Many people working at home cite the lack of human interaction as a real downside. So it’s encouraged to continue socializing with your colleagues when working remotely. So if your office has communication tools, use them! Think about how you traditionally would ask questions or advice on a work matter, or you’d stop for a minute to say hello to a co-worker when you passed by their desk. Try doing these same things digitally.
Everyone stay safe out there!