Due to the rapid spread of the COVID-19 global pandemic, our team has been instructed to work from home (we’re on #WFH day 11!) and so have professionals around the world. While some of us are thrilled with a 3-foot commute, others may not like the idea of mixing home and work-life.
Adjusting and focusing on work can be challenging when balancing children, big families, or even furry friends that want to be by our side 24/7. It can also be tempting to turn on Netflix and recline while working. With so many distractions at home, it is important to identify ways to remain productive. Below we have listed 6 tips that have helped our team adjust while working from home during the COVID-19 pandemic, and will hopefully be useful to you as well:
- Make a daily routine for yourself
This is at the top of the list! Keep your normal routine of waking up early, fully dressed, teeth brushed, and brush your hair! Don’t skip your lunch or breaks and don’t underestimate the power of getting fresh air. Our team still takes our daily walks, even if it’s around the block! Find what works for you and stick to it!
- Open and close your day
It may be difficult to get in work-mode especially for WFH newbies. Setting activities that help you get in the right mindset will lead to more productivity. Start your mornings by drinking your normal bev (most of us are coffee addicted) for the first 20-30 minutes of your day to prepare and ease into your workday, or begin with a short meditation that will relax your mind. Ending your day with a workout or yoga can help you get out of work-mode.
- Create a dedicated workspace
Creating a distraction-free workspace will give you a better shot at completing tasks without interruptions. Utilize a space in your home that is quiet and well lit- will come in handy for those video conferences! Whether you’re at a desk or your kitchen table, proximity to an outlet and having your work necessities at hand is important. Avoid getting up frequently, unless you need to get some fresh air.
- Communicate, Communicate, Communicate!
One of the toughest things about working from home is not having in-person contact with your team. Now is the time to over-communicate with your team and know that the stream of communication can still be efficient! Share your calendar with your team and let them know when you are available. Don’t be shy to video-chat, email, instant message, text, or call your team members. A quick chat is just like popping by your colleague’s desk in the office.
- Download the right tools
We have a few favorites of our own! Our team loves using Slack for internal messaging. It allows us to have different chat rooms for specific departments, as well as for our entire team. Google Hangouts and Zoom are great for video conferences, just be sure to have a stable Wifi connection. We also like to stay updated on Google Calendar so we know exactly what our team’s day looks like. All of our documents are saved in our Enterprise Dropbox accounts – and we also utilize Google Docs for global access.
Bonus Tip: Take a look at my current task list that helps me streamline my work. You can download it too! Simply go to the file and make a copy.
Lastly, remember to breathe and be patient with yourself. Take a few moments throughout your day to breathe and relax your body. It is easy to feel stressed and anxious, but taking a breather allows you to ground yourself. If you need to close all your screen windows and take a quick online meditation be sure and do so!
Learn what works best for you and what keeps your productivity levels steady. Personalize our list and fine-tune it to fit your needs. Remember, it is okay if it takes some time to find your rhythm and flow.