Coronavirus pandemic has changed the work culture across the world significantly. Before Corona times, work from home was given on a case to case basis, and only a very small percentage of employees working from home. Now, work from home has become the new norm with many companies preferring it due to lower costs.
Working from home has its own pros and cons like any other thing. It offers benefits like zero money and time spent on traffic and transportation, flexibility, better work-life balance, etc. Many people spend hours in commute to office battling traffic jams, and working from home is a huge relief in this aspect. However, work from home also poses some challenges like communication gaps, body posture issues, distractions due to home environment, loss of boundary between work life and personal life, mental health issues etc.
Working occupies a major chunk of our time. So, it is important to take good care of this time and minimize the challenges that arise out of working from home. So, how to work from home productively and achieve the goals? How to stay positive and mentally healthy while working from home?
Here are the ten tips.
10 tips to boost productivity while working from home:
1. Have a designated space: Using a living room or bedroom for work is not productive because the boundary between personal life and work life is lost, and work creeps into personal life. So, in your home, keep a dedicated space for work. It could be a separate room or a separate space. Use this space only for working and not for any other purpose. Make it a habit to take office calls or work only from this space. Having a designated space helps you maintain a clear boundary between personal life and work. When you go into this space, you automatically get into the work setting, and productivity improves. Keep this space clean, bright, and cheerful.
2. Create a schedule: While working from home, it is easy to lose track of time and to lead irregular life. With irregular life, sleep cycles get impacted and lead to various health issues in the long run. So, have a proper schedule for the entire day. Maintain a login time and logout time, like in a physical office setting. Plan lunchtime and breaks. Having a proper schedule creates a routine and makes it easy to accomplish the goals. Without a proper schedule in place, it becomes stressful and tiresome.
3. Be mindful of Social media: Social media is a huge distraction that impacts your productivity. Working from home gives the liberty of being on Social media, but checking it constantly drains your energies and impacts your productivity negatively. Have a dedicated time for it and use it only during that time.
4. Invest in the right chair and desk: Using the wrong chair and desk leads to posture problems, body pains, and health issues in the long run. So, invest in the right chair and desk, which helps you maintain the right posture and gives you comfort. Here are some wonderful options you can try out.
5. Create goals for the day: Before you start your work in the morning, write down the goals you plan to accomplish for the day and keep them in front of you. Having clear goals keeps you centered and focused. It gives you direction and keeps you on track.
6. Get a dose of Sunlight: Take breaks during work and make it a point to get fresh air and a dose of sunlight. Staying indoors continuously makes you feel sleepy and dull. Open your windows and doors to let the fresh air and sunlight enter your home. Take a walk in nature. Get Sunshine break. This recharges your mind and keeps you cheerful.
7. Set clear expectations: Set clear expectations with family members about your work timings and availability. Tell them upfront when you are available and when you are not available. Doing this will make it easy for you and your family members to manage working from home. Setting clear expectations will prevent distractions from family while working.
8. Use video chats: While working from home, it is common to feel isolated and disconnected from the team because human interaction is very less. To feel connected with your team, have regular video chats. This reduces the feeling of isolation and loneliness.
9. Dress well: Dress as if you are going to the office. This will give a great start to your day. Dressing well makes you feel good about yourself. It brings enthusiasm and cheer and gives you the same feeling of going to the office. This also keeps you well prepared for video calls.
10. Take good care of yourself: In a physical office, people hang out and have those friendly conversations during breaks and lunchtime. There is the bond of friendship, care, and laughter in physical space. Human interaction is more and lively. But when one works from home, this flavor of human interaction will be missing. Mental health gets impacted when you work from home for a long time. Also, there is a high possibility of binge eating due to easy access to food, and this leads to weight gain and obesity.
So, it is important to take good care of yourself when you are working from home. Every day spend some time in nature and nurture yourself. Involve yourself in some physical activities like gymming, walking, swimming, exercising, etc. Do yoga or meditation for your emotional and mental health. Take good care of yourself.
These are the tips for improving your productivity during work from home. Whether it is work from an office or work from home, don’t forget to enjoy your work. We spend a large percentage of our time at work, and it is important to make our work an enjoyable process. Others cannot do anything to make us enjoy our work. It is we who should find purpose and fun in the work we are doing every day.
Have fun and enjoy your work!
“Work is love made visible” – Kahlil Gibran