It’s been at least three weeks since most people have been sheltering in place, even longer for some and it feels like this strange ruthless and unwelcomed disease has altered our lives, albeit temporarily. So many people are now working from home, doing their part in stopping the spread of the coronavirus. For most, this is something new, different and unsettling. Fear not, there are simple ways to make working from home a little more manageable.
As with all things new and different, there is an adjustment period along with a need for strategies to help us adjust from what was, to what is. Here are five ways to help you adjust to working from home productively. Read until the end for an epic bonus tip!
It should go without saying but, just in case you need a reminder, here it is. We all have some sort of hygiene routine in the morning and in the evening. This routine is incredibly important. Some reasons are obvious and some, not so much. Just because you are at home doesn’t mean you get to keep your funky breath until noon. Come on now, brush your teeth, wash your face, brush your hair and at least moisturize. These are things you would do daily before work so please do the same while at home. Our hygiene routine also serves as a timer, a signal for our mind and bodies that it’s time to rise and shine or it’s time to slow down. This will help you feel awake and refreshed in the morning. (Your quarantine buddies will thank you.)
First things first, let’s please get out of those pajamas. I get it, pajamas are soft, comfy, cozy and that’s great when you are going to bed or laying on the couch binge-watching tv all day. There is a time for pajamas and binge-watching. That time isn’t while you are supposed to be working even though you are home. It can be tricky picking out what to wear, pajamas make you want to stay in bed all day while some loungewear, can make you feel like a complete slob. The trick is to find something comfortable that you wouldn’t be ashamed to walk out of your door in. Avoid super worn out or torn clothing that would make you look and feel like a slob. I’d recommend some good leggings or joggers for bottoms. The top will depend on whether you have video calls or meetings. If so, try to put in more effort since your co-workers and potentially your boss will be able to see you. if not, a t-shirt, sweatshirt or sweater works just fine. Loungewear sets are good too. If you usually wear makeup to work, put a little bit on to make you feel good. This will definitely get you in work mode and bonus, you won’t have to think twice if you need to walk your dog, answer the door for the delivery guy or make a quick grocery or drug store run.
Here are some double-duty pieces that you”ll live in during and post COVID-19.
(Just click photo to look around or shop)
Create A Workspace
Whether it’s a permanent spot, or a makeshift one, choosing a workspace away from distractions will help you focus and get your tasks done. if you’re lucky, you have an office space at home or a desk in a corner somewhere you can use while working from home. If it’s within your means, I’d recommend getting a desk you can fit somewhere in your space to make working from home a little easier. Simply pull one of your dining room chairs over and workspace it is. I’ll link some options for desks and other accessories If you need some. If none of the above are an option, choose a spot like your dining area, bar area or even your vanity space. Somewhere you can sit and shut out the rest of the world while you work.
Distractions are a given when you are at home at any time, the tv and couch, along with all those shows everyone’s been talking about that you just have to watch, the snacks in your cabinet calling your name, social media. You can count on a dozen things to distract you when you are working from home and it’s helpful to minimize them so you can get your work done. It’s difficult to focus on anything when your phone is within reach, it’s even worse if you have any notifications turned on, distracting much? Keep your phone in another room while working or turn off notification and place it face down if you need it close to you. Headphones can also go a long way in helping you stay focused. You can block out some noise and even listen to music while you work. I love headphones/earphones because they signal to everyone around you that you are focused on something else. It can help signal the same to your kids or spouse that you’re busy. If you listen to music while you work at the office, feel free to do so at home too, it’s something fun and familiar to help with the transition. Tip: I like to find cute and functional items to add to my workspace, It helps to create a fun and inspiring environment.
This is something I’ve adopted in my own life that has increased my productivity. It’s especially useful when multi-tasking. With time blocking, you allocate a certain amount of time of your day for specific tasks, whether it’s responding to emails or playtime with kiddos or working on a presentation. As soon as the allocated time is up, you move on to the next task. This is especially helpful when working from home and you need to work, prep meals, time with family, house chores and so on, all while confined to your living space with a dozen distractions coming at you at the same time. I find that time blocking makes time management easier and in time, effortless. If you do try it, please leave me a comment and let me know if this suggestion is at all helpful. You can set a timer for an hour, three, however long you allocate to the task you are tackling. When the timer goes off, move on to the next task. Be sure to block time off for breaks because hey, you are working. I’d argue my dear readers with children are working even harder’ so give yourself some breaks.
As you can see, I’m a huge fan of accessorizing a space, an outfit, a home. It’s fun to find functional pieces that can serve as decor as well. That my friends is what I call win-win.
Stay Connected (Bonus Tip!!)
We are social beings, this is something that will never change. We need and crave contact with others, be it family, friends, co-workers, grocery store clerks, uber drivers. Our lives revolve around each other and working from home should not change that. Use technology to keep in touch with others as much as you can because staying social helps us feel connected. We may not be able to hit our favorite brunch spot (who else is ready to brunch with a vengeance when all of this is over?) however, we can have facetime, zoom or even WhatsApp parties, movie nights, date nights and whatever else, virtually.
Thank you so much for stopping by the blog today, let’s love on one another a little harder and together we’ll get through this COVID-19 pandemic.
Stay safe and healthy.