Up until recently, only around 6% of Americans were working from home full-time but, due to the coronavirus outbreak, thousands of companies were forced to send their employees to work remotely from home in an attempt to prevent the spread of the virus.
While many people were pleased with the decision that not only they got to keep their jobs but they also no longer had to commute or spend a lot of time on meetings, work productivity has increased, at least during the first weeks of lockdown.
As people jumped into a new routine of sweatpants and office shirts during Zoom meetings, they also had to handle the downsides of working from home – improvised desks, cooking a couple of times per day, and looking after their kids or pets who would often interrupt or completely take over live meetings and briefs.
Under these circumstances, employees who weren’t used to WFH (work from home) before the pandemic, noticed a decrease in productivity and a harder time separating their work-life from their private one. If you’re in the same situation and looking for a way out, here is what we suggest.
Stick to your routine
The number one enemy of productivity is not having a strict working schedule as you would while working from a normal office.
We suggest starting your day as you would normally do when going to the office, and this implies waking up at a certain hour, taking a shower, cooking breakfast, and even putting some office clothes on.
It can be tempting to sleep in and work in your PJs while sipping coffee in bed but this can immediately affect your mood and kill your productivity. Get up and get going as you would on a normal day at the office.
Maintain regular working hours
If you don’t want to answer emails up until midnight or finish projects way past your working hours, we suggest you maintain the same routine when it comes to your working schedule as well. Start work at the same hour every day and don’t be tricked by the mirage of flexible hours.
A flexible working schedule is designed to allow you to fix an urgent problem you can have during regular working hours such as a doctor’s appointment or having to pick up the kids from school. Therefore, keep this card for special occasions and try to stick to your regular schedule.
Working while your kids are playing in the backyard or constantly hustling could be tiring and unproductive. Try to set boundaries and explain to them that, even though you are home, you still have to work.
Take small breaks to check in on your kids and make a pact to spend every coffee break or lunch break with them. Other than that, whenever possible, work from a separate room where your kids don’t have access to. If you and your partner are both working from home, try dividing the working hours between you two so that you have at least half a day of productive work.
Keep an eye on your children to stay out of trouble and ask your partner for help so that you can both get your work done at the end of the schedule.
Don’t forget to exercise
An ancient Latin saying, “Mens Sana In Corpore Sano” should still apply during a lockdown or when you’re working from home. Therefore, don’t forget to exercise and maintain a healthy lifestyle as much as you can.
If the weather is good, try setting up a picnic with the kids in the backyard or spending quality time outdoors, exercising. In this review, you can find some of the coolest scooters on the market to take for a short trip to the beach or the nearest forest to breathe fresh air.