Working from home has become the newest trend in several organizations across the world, following the global outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic.
With major Nigerian states (Lagos, Abuja & others) on complete lockdown, it is no surprise that a lot of people have had to adjust to the process of working from home, especially in a country where remote work has always been a perk, not a readily available option.
Recently joined the millions of people who have to work through a virtual office space? We understand how difficult it is to find your rhythm and be productive, all things considered.
To ease your stress, here are ten ways you can make the best of the situation and be productive while working from home. Check them out below!
1. Maintain your daily routine
Remember your routine before all you had to do was roll over and grab your laptop? Well, while working in your PJs is very convenient, you need to go back to your standard routine.
You don’t have to get dressed in long sleeves and tuck in your shirt, you can still be comfortable but make sure you get up when due and be ready at the same time for work. Set up to get started and keep distractions at a minimum till you are done with ‘official’ work for the day. Granted, most companies are working beyond the regular 9-to-5 at this period, but maximum productivity is still expected at the regular hours.
In order for you to make the best of the days, just maintain an organized routine so you can be accountable for your activities.
2. Set up a ‘workspace’
An essential part of maintaining your routine is having somewhere to ‘resume’. A lot of the work is getting done through virtual meetings and team boards on a digital workspace but, if you don’t have a home office it is best to create a workspace.
You can set up in a corner of the dining room or your guest room, but if you can, avoid having your workspace in the living room.
Put everything you need to be at the ‘office’ very close to your workspace so that you avoid distractions from getting up too many times.
3. Use professional communication tools
Being at home can make you feel very comfortable while working but it is very important to maintain the order and sophistication surrounding regular work-hours.
Communicating via Whatsapp may seem like a good idea now that you are at home, it is a very personal platform that may create multiple distractions.
For team meetings, check-ins and all other work related communications, be sure to stick with professional platforms for communication and task-management.
There are software and tools like Slack, Zoom, and Trello which have been designed to make your life and work somewhat easier.
4. Stick to deadlines
It is so easy to push back on things and say, ‘I’ll get to it later, let me just…’ when you are working from home.
Try to avoid procrastination because it could easily become your biggest problem when it comes to being productive.
Always stick to your deadlines and put off all distractions while working to meet up with the deadlines.
5. Stay off social media
Social media is a great way to be updated about the current pandemic and avoid boredom while in lockdown but, it can easily pull your mind into a foray of distractions and hinder your productive efforts.
While working, try to stay off social media so that you can maintain focus and get work done.
6. Create a playlist
Usually, the office or physical working space will be filled with background noise and for some people that is what keeps them working.
To simulate that experience while you work from home, you can create a playlist of calm songs that also help with your focus.
This way, your mind doesn’t get swayed into distractions by silence and you can become more productive.
An important part of the campaign and awareness against the spread of the coronavirus has been the emphasized need to stay hydrated.
Additionally, drinking water and other light liquids while working has been proven to help focus.
By staying hydrated, you accomplish two things at once; you remain healthy and productive.
8. Set your alarms
For people who work with a single-lane of focus, it can be easy to be drawn into the work routine while at home and forget to care for those dependent on you or simply do your regular activities.
A great way to maintain balance and avoid the mental stress that could hinder productivity is to set alarms for intervals where you need to step away from the table.
9. Take walk/stretch breaks
Being in the same position for the entire day takes its toll on your body because unlike the actual office where you have to get up and move about for meetings, you only have to pull up a tab.
A great way to keep your mind and body fresh and full of vigor through the long hours is to take short breaks and walk or stretch.
10. Have a reward system
Lastly, a great way to keep yourself working effectively while at home is to have a reward system. This is especially helpful for people who do solo work most of the time.
When you have work-related things to do and you feel like procrastinating, simply set up a reward for getting it done.
Little things like a quick Netflix movie or a snack from your cupboards work excellently as personal rewards.