LIFESTYLE NEWS - Families are locked down at home for the next 21 days and many find themselves trying to juggle home and office life. Setting up an office is the first step, but what’s next?
Media and communications specialist, Jenny Griesel has been working from home for years now and shares five easy steps to help you work more productively from home.
Get up, get dressed and get started
While you don’t need to be dressed as smartly as you would at the office, you still need to look and feel good. Get up, clean your teeth, wash your face, do your make up if need be, and get started for the day. Get ready in the same way that you would do on any other workday.
With digital conferences and conference calls being at the order of the day for the next couple of weeks, it is important to note that some of them include video calling. To maintain presentability and your self-esteem is therefore key. Working in pyjamas is not an option. How is your brain supposed to kick into work mode if you are dressed for bed?
Stick to your schedule
It is important to keep your productivity levels up, and part of that means a good, timeous start. If anything, you will be saving time that you normally spent in the traffic. Start working at the same time that you usually arrive at your desk. You may start your day earlier, but not later than usual.
Clock the same number of hours that you normally work. If you’re lucky, you’ll end earlier, and have additional time to spend with loved ones at home.
Create a work “space”
The ideal for this is a study or office – a place dedicated to work where spouses and the tiny humans are ideally not allowed to enter while you are working. If possible, close the door. If you don’t have a dedicated room that you can use for this, try to create a dedicated space, even if it is only a desk in another room (preferably one not near a loud TV or too much noise). Noise-cancelling headphones are very useful in noisy spaces.
You need to tell your subconscious mind that when you are sitting in that chair, at that desk, it’s work time.
Nobody is a robot that can work all day, and although ending the day earlier by working flat out may seem tempting, it is not possible. I’ve read that burnout levels are often higher among people who work from home.
In the same way that you would get up for a cup of coffee or a leg stretch at the office, do this at home. A few short breaks are part of staying productive. Now you might get to enjoy these with a quick walk into the garden outside or with your family or pets – bonus. Just keep an eye on the time. Regret seeps in quickly if you spend the whole afternoon on a break and the work piles up.
Now is not the time for fried breakfasts or long rich lunches, just because the fridge is close-by. Eat-in the same way that you normally do during the work-week, as you need to retain your energy and productivity. It is actually even more important now to eat in a healthy way, all things considered. Take your vitamins!
If you work for a company and are hoping to be promoted anytime soon, this is when your manager will be looking to see how well you self-manage. It will also be a time of seeing who stands out by keeping others motivated, who provides solutions and who tries to add value in light of what is happening around us.
When you get the hang of this, which you will, you will soon have a lot more time on your hands for other things. What a pleasure.
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