Working from home because of COVID-19? You’re not alone! Many companies are making the switch to teleworking to practice social distancing and flatten the curve, but it isn’t without its challenges. As someone who has exclusively worked from home for about 4 years, I’ve had plenty of trial and error to find my most productive self. I rounded up my top tips so you can be productive, too!
Keep your routine.
If work isn’t setting times for you to “clock in,” this doesn’t just give you a free pass to sleep in late! As someone who works from home all the time - and not just during a quarantine - it has been important for me to stick with regular times to wake up and get to work. For me, I’m up by 7am and working by 8am. I’m also done working by 4 or 5pm - this is another important part of your routine! But more on this later.
Make your schedule and to-do list in the morning.
Before I even open up my laptop, I make my schedule and to-do list. This is so important when you’re working from home because something is inevitably going to pop up that seems more important in the moment. And a lot of things can pop up and steal your day away! For your to-do list, I think it’s really important to make it feasible. You should feel accomplished by the end of the day and motivated for the next.
Change out of your pajamas (but do be comfy).
Professional clothes have never been appealing to me - I always felt like I was suffocating (both physically, mentally, and creatively). However, if I stay in my pajamas, I’m in a pajama state of mind. I do pull myself together in the morning, but I make it comfy (and yes, I’m over here pairing hoop earrings with yoga pants).
Keep regular mealtimes.
This can go one of two ways: you either forget to eat because you didn’t put thought into when and what you’re eating. Or, you snack constantly. Regular mealtimes (and not constant snacking) are important for balancing your blood sugar so your energy is great all day long. If V+B has been sustaining you at work, we can still sustain you at home with ready-to-eat nourishing meals (yes, we’re still making deliveries! And here’s what we’re doing for your health + safety!)
Designate a work space (and tidy up the night before).
Try not to make it the couch! If you don’t have a desk, consider a makeshift standing desk for at least part of your day by stacking books on a counter. It’s not ideal, but it can certainly work. And before you turn in for the night, make sure your space is tidy. Heading into a messy workspace in the morning is not conducive to productivity. Imagine if you went into your office to find a few pairs of shoes and last night’s dirty dishes (this would never happen, and for good reason).
Ask others to respect when you’re working.
And let them know when you’re free to talk. This includes partners and children who are home from school. If you have a conference call, make sure they’re aware so that they can ask you anything necessary before or after, but not during. This is also so important for your productivity. And on that note, if you have children at home, let your coworkers know if they don’t already so that they can give you the flexibility you need and understand the possible video call appearance.
Set boundaries for work and home life.
Lastly, but perhaps most importantly, are your boundaries. Just because your office is now in your home does not mean that you are constantly at work. Avoid checking emails once you log off for the day and don’t be tempted to just get a “little bit more” work done when the kids go to bed. Now more than ever, your mental health matters. Make sure to take a little bit of you time.
Need more resources during this time? These articles might be helpful for you:
- Breathe Easy: Simple Yoga Poses to Help Reduce Anxiety
- The 7-Day Walking Plan
- Nutrition Labels and Why They Matter
- How to Kick Your Sugar Habit and Still Have Dessert