Due to the recent news of the coronavirus, many people are now working from home and, as a result, trying to figure out what that looks like for them. I have been working from home for over 4 years now and while it has taken me some time to figure out what works (and what definitely doesn’t!) I thought I would share my tips with you! Everyone’s work from home life may look a bit different depending on your job and if you also have children or a spouse at home, etc. but these tips should help you to get through the next little bit.
A note: I am aware that this is a very serious pandemic and I am taking my own precautions by social distancing, self-quarantining as much as possible & protecting both myself and others. This is not something anyone should be taking lightly whether you are young and healthy or not. It is my hope that everyone will follow the directions of the CDC and other officials in order to “flatten the curve” of COVID-19. With that said, since I am able to run my business and work from home, I am going to try to do that as best as I can in an effort to provide a sense of normalcy. I think we can all agree we need a sense of “normal” right about now, right?! I personally need a sense of normalcy to lessen my anxiety and stress over this situation. In the meantime, please let me know if there’s anything specific you want to see from me… stay safe and healthy! xx
Tips for Working from Home
- SET A SCHEDULE & ESTABLISH A ROUTINE
Setting a routine and establishing a schedule when working from home is so important. In the mornings I wake up and watch the Today show while having my breakfast and coffee. During that time I make a to-do list of the things I need to accomplish for the day and it helps start off my day strong and with a purpose. As you’re beginning to work from home set up a few different schedules and see what works best for you! You may find it easier to knock out the tedious stuff all at once or you may want to scatter it throughout your day!
- GET UP & GET DRESSED
For me personally, I feel more “awake” and ready to tackle the day if I am dressed. Some days that means getting fully dressed and other days that’s throwing on workout clothes so I can make sure I get a workout in later. Either way, get out of your PJs and into something that is comfortable and will allow you to feel good while you work!
- CREATE A TO-DO LIST FOR EACH DAY
I live for my daily to-do lists. It helps me see what needs to be accomplished for the day at a glance. I also feel a sense of accomplishment when I am able to cross items off of that list! Having a to-do list makes the day more manageable and helps you to remain on task as much as possible.
- USE TIME TO YOUR ADVANTAGE
If you’re used to working in an office setting you may actually find that you get more done in less time while working from home. When you make your to-do list, set up a time limit for each task. This will help you to tackle one task at a time (and not feel the need to multitask) and having a time limit will force you to get things done. I love this time cube from amazon for helping with time management.
- LIMIT YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA USAGE DURING WORK HOURS
It’s tempting to use any “down” time to scroll on social media – but don’t give in! What starts as a quick scroll can quickly lead you down a rabbit hole of wasting time! I say this from experience! Often times I will put my phone in another room or on do not disturb in order to complete my tasks because it’s too much of a distraction!
- HAVE A DESIGNATED WORK SPACE
While having an office space in your home may not be feasible in every situation (especially if working from home is temporary for you), be sure to set up a designated place to work where you can keep your items and feel organized. Maybe that’s the dining room table or placing a table in your guest room. Whatever the case may be, make sure it’s a space where you can work for long periods of time without distractions. I love having my home office because I know that’s where I go to work and can physically shut the door if need be in order to avoid distractions.
- KNOW WHEN TO TURN ON & WHEN TO TURN OFF
One of the hardest parts about working from home (aside from the distractions) is knowing when to turn work on and off. It is so easy to check those work emails or bring your computer into the living room to finish up something. Have a designated starting and stopping time for your work day, just like you would at your office. There were plenty of times, especially when I first started working from home, that I would find myself still on my computer at 9 or 10 o’clock at night. Set those boundaries with yourself early on so that you have a sense of normalcy. If you find that you need a turn on & off time for the news or social media, implement that too! The news can be stress inducing, especially these days, so limit that if you need to!
- TAKE A BREAK
Working from home can be isolating and draining. Set up time within your day to break for lunch, a few minutes outside, or for a workout. I always eat lunch away from my desk and use that time to get in a bit of reading too! Since I work from home, I also try to break up my day by getting outside for a walk – even if it’s only for 20 minutes!
Avoid these things when working from home
Working from home for a few years now I have learned a few things to not do when working from home, so I thought I would share those with you too!
It can be so easy to snack non-stop even if you’re not necessarily hungry when working from home. I try to limit the amount of unhealthy snacks we have in the house because of this! Since most of us are stocked up with extra food right now, try to set up “snack” times throughout your day so that you aren’t mindlessly snacking all day! Since I’m pregnant I work snacks into my day every day and make sure I’m staying hydrated with water!
- GETTING DISTRACTED BY HOUSEHOLD THINGS
One of the biggest distractions when working from home is all of the household items you “think” you need to be doing. There’s always laundry to be done, dishes to be put away or an animal that wants attention, but limit your distractions. Set ground rules with yourself (and whoever else is in your home) about what is to be expected during working hours! Working hours are NOT for doing dishes or other household chores. I will occasionally do laundry during my lunch break but other than that I try to limit non-work things throughout the day unless they are absolutely necessary. These small chores can easily throw your whole day and schedule out of whack.
- TV & SOCIAL MEDIA
Both television and social media are huge distractions that can also be time wasters during the day. If you are tempted to watch TV or scroll on social media, get rid of those distractions. Try working in a room without TV or putting your phone in another room or on DND so you can get your tasks done!