After yesterday’s news of a national lockdown, many of us will be working from home for longer than expected, during this chaotic time its important to create routines and take control of our lives as much as is possible. Here are 5 tips to help you work from home effectively.
1. Plan your day the night before
We’ve all heard the saying if you fail to plan you plan to fail. I apply this saying to my work life. For those of you who are morning people, good for you… and for the rest of us, having a plan for the day makes waking up and getting started with the day much easier. Cutting out that part of the morning when you’re figuring out if you should check your email, eat breakfast or workout first, saves you from making unnecessary decisions reserving that brainpower for important tasks and important decisions you have to make. Taking out a few minutes at the end of your working day to note down your plan from the moment you wake up to the moment you shut down your computer for the day is a great way to set yourself into a routine, bringing back some much-needed order in this time of uncertainty and chaos. Not to mention all of us that are still fortunate enough to have jobs, should be using this time to level up and do our absolute best.
2. Get dressed
As simple as it sounds we all known the truth of the matter, it can be so easy to work all morning in your pyjamas or that crusty toothpaste stained hoodie. As comfy as that may be it does not get you in the professional working mood. The same way as if you went to the gym wearing a silk dress and stiletto heels, you probably wouldn’t be able to efficiently and effectively get much done to the same standard as if you were wearing sportswear, same applies to working from home ( sort of). It’s amazing how much an outfit can change your mood and motivation. Im not suggesting going full glam or wearing a perfectly tailored suit ( but why not ) something as simple as wearing an ironed shirt, making an effort to do your hair, wearing a few cute accessories and a nice top can help you feel ready to tackle the tasks for the day.
3. Reduce interruptions
There are certain interruptions that can really interrupt your workflow, minimising these can maximise your time and productivity. Schedule time for possible interruptions such as a time to answer emails ( avoid checking your phone and email several times a day ) schedule calling times, meal times, walking your dog, working out, whatever it may be scheduling time out for these things will make your day flow much better.
4. Create an organised working space
Having a clean and organised designated working space can drastically declutter your thoughts and increase productivity, waking up every morning and motivating yourself is hard enough without having to sit at a table full of old notes, dirty coffee cups and God knows what else, give yourself a fighting chance and create a clean and clear atmosphere to work in. Sitting by a window and letting in fresh air and natural light is a great way to keep you feeling alert and fresh, not like a prison inmate which is extremely important during self-isolation. If you’re a sucker for aesthetics adding a plant along with a few colour coordinated decor pieces can be another way to keep your mood up during working hours. An extra addition to your workspace is a study lamp, this works both for aesthetics but also visually instils a good working habit. While the lamp is on its time to work and stay focused and when it’s off its time to have a break-even stepping away from your desk space to further reinforce this area as a focused work zone.
5. Get active and take a breather
With less of a structure to your day, it is up to you to carve out the time to go for a walk and get some exercise ( responsibly). For the sake of your mental and physical health prioritise getting some fresh air even if it’s just sitting outside in your garden for ten minutes or walking your dog. Returning back to your working space you will feel refreshed and ready to get back to work.