Working from home isn’t for everyone, but while the coronavirus runs rampant, a lot of people have no other realistic choice. With COVID-19 overtaking our nation, workers in every state are being forced to choose between two options: work from home, or don’t work at all.
Obviously, working from home comes with a unique set of challenges. To make the best of your new, temporary workspace, consider taking the following measures:
Develop a Routine that Works for You
Your routine starts when you wake up and ends when you go to sleep. By cutting out your morning and evening commute, you’ve likely found that you have more free time during this crisis – which can be both a blessing and a curse. By limiting the amount of driving you need to do on a day-to-day basis, you will save money on gas and free up some extra hours during the day. That said, knowing you need to be out the door at a certain time makes it so you don’t have the option to procrastinate in the mornings or when you get home in the evenings, which can be really hard to avoid when you have nowhere else to be.
Just remember: procrastination is always the enemy. When you’re working from home, still wake up with an alarm, just as you would on any other workday (even if you aren’t working shift hours!). Make your bed. Cook breakfast. Do your laundry. Write in your planner. Go to sleep at a set time every night – and don’t put any of it off. It’s hard to keep track of what needs to be done when you’re stuck inside for days on end, but doing so will make you feel more productive and give you more energy to push through this new norm.
Invest in a second monitor. Or a comfortable work chair. Or a wireless keyboard. The point? Make your work station feel more like a work station. Don’t settle for working on your laptop in bed. Why? Because working from areas you are comfortable doing other things in may lead to counterproductive results. If you work from bed, you might want to nap. If you work from the couch, you may feel the urge to watch television. If you work from the kitchen table, you’ll probably want to snack. If you work from a place you’ve designated as a work-only zone… you get the point.
Working from home is an adjustment, and you’ll only make that adjustment harder on yourself if you refuse to adapt. If that means spending a few dollars to upgrade an area of the house into a temporary office, it could go a long way towards ensuring productivity.
Treat the Workday as You Would In-Office
Did you like to take outdoor walks as a way to clear your mind in-office? What about trips to the kitchen to refill your water bottle or coffee cup? Did you listen to music while you worked, or did you opt for total silence with earplugs? Whatever your tendencies in-office were, see that they transfer to this new way of life.
It doesn’t matter how you do it, either. Just don’t sit on the couch all day. Not only will you feel more lethargic and less apt to work, but you’ll make your transition back to the office once the coronavirus crisis is over more difficult to endure. It’s tough to make such drastic adjustments so quickly, so make things easier on yourself by treating your weekdays as you might in-office.
Liven Up the “Office”
It may already be your home, but turn your new “office space” into a personal sanctuary. Surround yourself with pictures of loved ones, funny quotes, print-outs, etc. Don’t just stick the computer on top of a table and call it a day; make your new workspace truly yours.
COVID-19 has put our country in a rare and unfortunate position; however, it also provides employers nation-wide the ability to test how working from home affects employees. By taking certain measures to improve productivity and remain engaged, you may find that working from home isn’t so bad after all.
For information on how Compulse Integrated Marketing can help your company during these desperate, uncertain times, call us at 844.821.2154.