The new world of COVID-19 has brought it’s fair share of changes. Simple trips out have become excursions, cleaning your home has taken on a whole new meaning, and hundreds of parents have suddenly become homeschool-experts.
For some people, the most jarring change has been adjusting to working from home.
Working from home can make it hard to focus throughout the day, especially if you live in a house full of family or roommates. Luckily there are ways to improve your productivity while working from home during the novel coronavirus.
Here are five quick tips to help you be more productive while working from home.
Keep Your Morning Routine
As tempting as working all day from bed in your pajamas may be, try to replicate your morning routine when you were still going to the office, minus the commute. Get up, wash your face, and eat a good breakfast. If you start your day by simply sitting up in bed and opening your laptop to check your work email you are setting yourself up to work at half-speed for the rest of your day.
You’ll find that you will be so much more productive by taking this step.
Create a separate work space
We’ve already addressed that working from bed is a bad thing. Try to find a separate workspace for yourself in your home. You don’t need to have a whole separate room. Claiming half of your dining room table as your own can suffice. You can even create a small, compact office space in the corner of any room.
Try to find a small desk like this Espresso Stained Desk and a simple office chair to create a home office that is stylish but compact. Having your own space will help you stay motivated and focused while working from home.
This step can be especially difficult if you are a workaholic. It’s so much harder to separate work and leisure time when you are not physically leaving your work space to go home and relax.
Make a clear start and end to your work day while you are working from home. Purchase a clock that is clearly visible on your work desk or set an alarm on your phone letting you know that your day is done.
If you have a separate work phone turn it off at the end of your day, or set your phone to do not disturb. If you live with a spouse or a roommate, tell them when you want to start and end your work day and ask them to hold you accountable to those hours.
By having clear boundaries around your work day you will avoid burning out and will be consistently more productive.
Turn Off the News
It’s important to acknowledge that you are not just working from home but that you are working from home during a pandemic. The world is changing rapidly and news can be not just distracting but disturbing. Turn off the TV and pause the push notifications on your phone from news sources during work hours.
Try to watch or check the news only at designated parts of the day. If you absolutely cannot wait until the end of the day, try to find a way to clear your mind and reset before you go back to work so you are able to stay focused.
The world is a stressful place right now, and it’s good to give yourself space to process what you might see on the news.
Have an End of the Day Practice
This is the fun one. Without an end-of-day commute to unwind and disconnect from the work day it can be hard to set the boundaries I mentioned above, leading to burnout.
Try creating a ritual at the end of your day to let your body and mind know you’re done with work.
A simple meditation practice can be a great way to unwind. Or you can pour yourself a drink. Maybe going for a run is more your vibe.
Whatever it is find a way to end your day and symbolically move from work time to relaxing.
You’ll find yourself so much more productive the next morning as a result.
Working from home online can make you feel like you lack the focus you used to find at the office. Try these simple steps and you’ll find yourself getting more work done and feeling more like your old self.