It’s a weird time in the world right now with the Coronavirus forcing a global quarantine. As a result, many are now working from home for the first time. While you get to skip the commute, working from home is still work and has its challenges. I’ve been working a remote corporate job for the past 2 years and pulled together a few tips on how to effectively work from home.
Shower and Dress
If you don’t feel the part, it’s hard to get into work mode. At a minimum, shower and put on clothes that are not sweatpants. I put makeup on most days even though I don’t always leave the house. Feeling refreshed fires up your energy and motivation.
Have a Designated Work Spot
Have a designated spot in your home where you work. A quiet home office is ideal but if you don’t have that, use a kitchen table or counter where you can get comfortable. Avoid working from your couch where you will likely be distracted and feel uncomfortable. I live in a small apartment but have a desk near a window. Even though it’s a foot away from my living room it still gets me in work mode when I sit there and it doesn’t strain my neck the way working from my couch does.
Invest in a Proper Desk Setup
If you work from home often, invest in things to set yourself up ergonomically. Things like a desk, comfortable chair, computer or laptop riser, headset, etc. Straining your neck and back from a crappy setup can affect your productivity.
Follow Your Normal Office Schedule
It’s important to follow a normal office schedule so you don’t burnout. Don’t start working as soon as you wake up just because you can. Eat breakfast in peace, take a lunch break and remember to pick a designated time each day to power down. Leave your computer and work phone in another room when you are done. It’s crucial to separate work from your personal time when they are both happening in the same general space.
Take Care of the Most Pressing Matters First
To effectively work from home, each day make a list of a few items that need to get done and do those first. That way you can eliminate that stress as soon as possible and complete them before any distractions come up.
Communicate Your Schedule
If you are sharing your home with others, let them know if there are any times where you can’t be interrupted for anything less than an emergency. If you have children that may need your attention, let your colleagues know in case you have to step away for a few minutes.
Luckily, we live in a world where technology allows us to connect from home. It certainly has its perks like zero commute, access to your kitchen and an opportunity to get more done at home in between meetings. But it also requires discipline to effectively work from home. Hopefully, these tips will help to set you up for success.