Working From Home? Me Too!

COVID19 certainly has changed the way many employees carry out their duties. Working from home used to be a luxury for only a select few, now many are stuck working from home with whatever means they have to work with. Some have a home office, while others have a table, a chair, maybe a bed to work on and make the best of it. You also must have that other spot you vacate to for your video calls.

While you are working from home, there are several aspects to be mindful of. Here are a few things to remember:


Starting, stopping and breaks. What employer wouldn’t want their employees to show up two hours early, work three hours late and not take any breaks or ask for a salary increase. That’s genius, but it can happen for those dedicated few. Having a planned start time, end time and breaktimes are good ideas. Having these in place will allow you to organize your day accordingly and take those much needed breaks. Never skip your breaks or shorten them.


Drink responsibly. I saw a Facebook post the other day that said “if you blow on your cup of wine during your meeting the other members will think your tea is too hot to drink.” Great advice, but not the point I’m trying to make. Make sure you drink some water, or juice or something other than the autonomous cups of coffee. I don’t think dehydration is going to make your day any easier or allow you to focus better.


Move your butt. Precisely. Get up and move around. We all know that sitting is harmful for extended periods of time, so getting up and moving around or some short exercise or activity will allow you to recalibrate and regain focus on your task. Some may have a desk they can both sit and stand at, but taking a break to move about is always recommended.


Distractions. I’ll keep this brief. Deal with them as best you can. Everyone has them. Not everyone manages the same distractions. Except for social media, we all struggle with that one. Work your way through the distractions as best you can and resolve them as they come up. Working from home will always have distractions, and you will always find them if you look for them or require one. You’re right, maybe now is a good time to put in a load of laundry or whip up a few cookies. Don’t panic, I lost focus from the word cookies too!


Human interaction. I know its tough during these uncertain times, but you still need to keep in contact with friends and family. Your smart phone was designed to do smart things so take advantage and keep in touch. Burying yourself in your work or chores is great but you need an escape. Go try having a virtual coffee.


Routine. It can feel like a routine. Jumping from your pillow to your computer screen and back to your pillow with a few breaks and snacks in between can become routine. Switch it up and keep your day fresh and exciting. Work is work, but fitting in some time to read, board games, or movie night might be what you are missing. Change is good.


Take sick days. Working from home can encourage or allow you to work through a headache or feeling unwell. Working while you are unfocussed can have an unwanted impact on the project you are working on. Always take the time you need to relax, recover and feel better. Sometimes a hot bowl of chicken noodle soup, a warm blanket and a good book is the solution you need. It’s important to look after yourself.


Background noise. Having something on in the background can help you stay focused. Listening to music, a pod cast, or audiobook in the background can keep you relaxed and also be a way of learning something new while you are working.


Working from home will always present new challenges. Hopefully this post will point out a few areas to keep in mind. Make the best of it. Roll with the punches, and hopefully some time soon everyone can safely return to their offices and workplaces and indulge in the long-forgotten normalcy of “going to work” every day. Until then, stay safe out there.


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