Due to the outbreak of COVID-19 around the globe, the government of several countries have implemented Lockdown orders to overcome the pandemic condition. Almost all firms have made it mandatory for their employees to start working from home. This means many people are dealing with an unexpected decision of doing work from home for the first time and that too for full working hours.
70% of people go to the office and the rest work from home, thus for many, remote work is totally a new reality!! Seeing the current scenario of Coronavirus impact over India, the government may extend this Lockdown period. So have you ever thought about how you will cope up with the situation?
Whether you are an office worker, or an IT professional or belongs to the customer service profession, if your entire work is on a computer, then you must follow a proper routine to maintain perfect balance in your work life and home life in such a way that both should not get disturbed!
So follow these tips that will help you to keep yourself accountable, collaborative, and productive as you work from home. Make sure that you’re successful, both at getting your work done and at maintaining your mental well-being
First Decide a Proper Work Area
Your first task is to create a workspace in your house that is favourable for your work from home. Typical office place should have a closed room with no roomies, parents, siblings, kids or no fridge and no bed to tempt you either way. But some of you are at your home all these things and people are there to distract you. In that case, convert your bedroom/study room into the workplace.
Pick the right furniture to make yourself comfortable as you have work 7 – 8 hrs a day. A proper desk and comfortable work chair are better than a back pain which is triggered by working on the sofa with your laptop saying this with my own experience!! 😄 Make sure you have a wall or background for a client video call or attending a conference at Skype.
Follow a Routine to Enhance Productivity
Get up early in the morning and do all your work in the same way as you do while going to the office, avoid the temptation to work comfortably as you are home. Set login time and tell everyone in the office how long you will be active in the day for work. If you are working late at night then inform teammate about it. Drop messages about whatever you have done at night and schedule them for the next day. Give your teammates a layout of work what will be done on the next working day!!
Keep Clearly Defined Working Hours
The biggest difference between working from home and working in the office is that you are in charge of your environment and have to treat yourself like an employee. You’ll get your best work done and be most ready to transition back to the office if you stick with your regular hours.
If you feel yourself extending your work hours because you aren’t doing anything in the evening, tell yourself it’s time to put work away, re-energized, and start tomorrow with a fresh mind. Communicate with the people you live with to establish boundaries so you can cut down on distractions during the workday.
Use Noise Eliminating Headphones
If more people from your home are also doing work from home, then your ordinary headphones will not work here then what you will do to eliminate your roommate’s voice? There is only one option in this lockdown situation i.e use of noise-cancelling headphones. They give a very balanced sound and are ideal for long sessions calling and working. Technically speaking, any type of headphone can provide some passive noise reduction as the materials of the headphones themselves block out some sound waves, especially those at higher frequencies.
Take a Break at Every 45-minutes
However, if any work has been sent for feedback and the reply has not been received yet or you are waiting for an important call but have not received it yet then do not worry! Either you should engage yourself in other office work or can do any household work. Because everyone is like you who is trying to adopt this new work from home schedule.
During this time, you can get up from the chair and take a walk, drink a glass of lemonade, put clothes in the machine for wash, rearrange your shelves, can attend urgent phone calls, spend some minutes with your kids and you can chop vegetables for dinner. After this, if you sit on your desk again, then you will be ready for new challenges and tasks, in this way you can increase your productivity. You can take a break every 45 minutes!
Sit in Proper light Exposure
While working, you need to pay attention to your room and desk lights. The room or desk at which you are working, there should be enough light on it. By changing the lightings around you can reduce the harmful effects on your via laptop screen. If light from a nearby window casts a glare, move your monitor and close the curtains. Install a darker switch for the overhead appliances if they’re too bright, or use a desk lamp with a moveable dimness that casts light evenly over your desk.
Do Meditation or Exercise
Focusing while working from home can be difficult for you especially if you are a woman who is managing home and office both. In starting, your attention will be constantly loose, I have been a sufferer of this, that’s why I can explain to you in a better way! Often, household chores suddenly start dominating office work when you work from home. In such a situation, you can save yourself to some extent by doing meditation or exercise.
Set aside some time for yoga, exercise, meditation or at home to do Zumba. From any one of these, take out 15 minutes of time either in the morning or in the evening, for this, you can also take the help of mobile apps. If there is time left for you while balancing home and work then 5 min stretching on your chair itself within 2 – 2 hours, this will give you immense relaxation.
Make Target List or Set Reminders
Don’t expect to be super-productive on 2-3 days as you need to adjust at home as this experience might be new for you. Expect targets to take a hit while you settle down. You can also make a to-do list and can work accordingly. To crack the productivity code, schedule the most difficult tasks for the morning and calls in the afternoon. Set reminders for sending mail, for calling clients, for exercise, for lunch and for drinking water!!. This will help you in maintaining your schedule.
Work in bite-sized parts of 35 minutes, stand up and walk around for 5 minutes in sunlight and fresh air. You can take the help of music to stay focused. When you are productive and happy, you can enjoy and appreciate the perks of doing Work from home in a better way.
Get Some Fresh Air
Many companies are urging employees to stay home, you’re likely going to spend a lot of time indoors. Since doctors have recommended limiting contact with people during this lockdown period hence socializing is not a good idea. To maintain social distance is a must, but you can go on your terrace or balcony to get some fresh air or can take a walk for 5 to 10 mins. Open your windows to let in as much natural daylight and fresh air as possible.
When social media distracts you at the office, teammates remind you to get back at work. But when you are working from home you are the boss and you are the employee there is no team to pull you back to work and this is a sure shot productivity killer. This doesn’t mean that you should switch off your phone as you can miss important calls of clients.
You can remove social media extensions and switch off all notifications both in your laptop browser as well as on your phone. If you can do this, then switch off your mobile data and use it only for calls. Keep your snacks, coffee or energy drink near your desk so that you don’t get up too often!
Can Take a Small Power Nap
To do more and better work, you can take the power nap. You should set a timer of 15 or 20 minutes so that you can get up on time and your work should not get affected.
So, you can follow these small tips to make your day productive when you are working from home! Let us know what kind of obstacles you are facing during this quarantine period!!