Working from home? It’s easy with these 9 simple steps
By Nicholas Sinclair | April 03, 2020
Every cloud has a rainbow!
Even though everything feels crazy and uncertain right now, it’s time to embrace reality.
For those of us who are fortunate enough, we get to work from home!
It’s been a long time coming, this gradual shift away from working in the office. As we begin to find faith in the Internet and its ability to keep us connected, let’s discuss how to effectively work from home with nine simple steps.
There is no doubt this new environment offers a degree of challenges, yet, it also presents a range of opportunities. So the question becomes, is it time to get stuck into your study or embrace this working from home culture? Or quite possibility the time to start that business you’ve been planning all these years?
Regardless of how you plan to spend your time over the coming weeks and months, these 9 simple steps will help you make the most of it.
1. You need a morning routine
This is at the top of the list because this should be at the top of your priority list. When working from home, you need an effective way of getting yourself from home mode to work mode without actually going to work.
A great way to do this is to set a morning routine! The first thing you do is get in the shower, get yourself looking nice and pretty. Do a home workout. Get the blood flowing, feel energised. Whatever it is that you need to get yourself mentally from the bedroom and into your work headspace, do it.
2. Do not! I repeat, do not go to ‘work’ in your pyjamas
Whilst it may seem tempting and almost exhilarating to wear your pyjamas to work now that you can. Don’t. It’s going to kill your productivity. You need to separate your sleep self and your awake self. When you sleep, you’re in the world of the subconscious: dreaming, replenishing. Bringing that into your waking life, in the form of your pyjamas, is asking for chaos.
The beauty of being able to go to work is that your work self stays at work. If you blur the lines between when you’re awake and when you’re asleep they start to merge into one another. If you bring your sleep self into your work life you’re not going to get as much done. In some ways, you’re still dreaming, relaxing, replenishing, when you should be hustling.
3. Set an end time
At work you have a set time when you clock out, so you need to have one for when you’re working from home. Otherwise, you’ll take your work home with you (literally). Having an end time to your workday means you can mentally step away from your work. You’ll sleep much better and you’ll leave work stress at work.
It also means that you don’t overwork. Otherwise, the temptation to keep working becomes all too easy. How can you be present with your family or with yourself, if your mind’s always at work? There will always be another email to send, another post to make.
Working endlessly won’t solve that, it will only exhaust you.
4. Find your spot
This is very important!
The reason you have your space at work is so you feel like you can get things done. As you have this at work, find this for yourself at home. If you don’t have a designated workspace, then you’re going to float around the house. You need your mind and body to know that this spot is your spot for getting it done. Then, when you sit there you’ll switch into work mode.
5. Choose to eat well and drink lots of water
Now that you’re working from home, you can be the king/queen of the kitchen. No more vending machines, no more complimentary doughnuts and biscuits. Choose to eat well! You’ve got the option now, so why not? You’ll find it easier to concentrate and you’ll feel better.
Drink plenty of water! Two to three litres per day. Get a water bottle and always have it next to you. If you’re feeling snacky, forget the chips and chocolate. Go for something that’s going to make you look and feel better. Nuts are an amazing health food and perfect for snacking. They’re full of protein, amino acids, omega three and six, plus lots of vitamins and minerals.
If you’re struggling to make a selection go for the nuts that are actually nuts: macadamias, walnuts, pistachios, pecans and Brazil nuts. (Fun Fact! Most of the others are seeds, not nuts! )
6. Know what you’re supposed to be doing
Working from home without your boss breathing down your neck can be amazing! But it can also make you unsure of what you should be doing. Normally it's clear, right? Then, all of a sudden it’s not.
Know what you need to do and more importantly, prioritise the most important tasks. It’s too easy without supervision to focus on easier tasks. Even though they make us feel busy, we don’t get much done.
Think about creating a daily to-do list, or downloading a time management app.
7. Take breaks and stretch
Having breaks throughout the day is crucial. It’s too easy for the mind to get foggy and gloomy when we’re focused all day long on one thing.
Get up, stretch, and move around. Reward yourself for all your effort, it’s these little things that keep us going at the end of the day. You deserve it. Go for a walk outside, fresh air works wonders. Do a five to ten-minute stretch routine. Get the blood flowing!
Jump up and down, do a handstand, play with the kids.
Spending hours sitting and not moving is terrible for your body and health. We have bodies that we’re meant to use. So use them!
8. Beware of distractions
Now that you’re at home, the whole family thinks they have access to you. Setting clear boundaries around when they can disturb you is very important. Otherwise, you’ll have people constantly demanding your attention and you’ll never get anything done.
This goes for the news and social media as well! It’s a strange time and as the situation unfolds there’s always the urge to check the news. That’s only going to distract you and send you into a frenzy.
Keep your news watching and social media time to a minimum! Ideally only after work and even better would be not at all. If it’s important, someone’s going to tell you.
9. Keep in contact
Working from home can be lonely. That’s why a lot of us like workplaces. There are people there to talk to and interact with. Without that, life can be lonely and isolating. So keep in contact with your work colleagues and friends.
Skype and Zoom are great options for keeping that face-to-face interaction alive. Messenger apps are great, but nothing beats that face-to-face connection. Humans need each other, it’s a part of being human. So keep in touch, it’ll help you feel connected to the world and each other.
So there’s your comprehensive guide to manoeuvring the current situation. As long as you're calm everything will work out fine. There’s nothing to stress about, you’ve got this!