It took a lot of strength to not include “watch The Office on loop” as one of my essential tips, just FYI.
Seriously though, I hope everyone is doing well, staying safe, and washing their damn hands. It’s scary shit out there and I, for one, am reaching the end of my f*&%@ rope.
And it has NOTHING to do with working from home.
In fact, I have been working for myself/from home for the past 5 years, so I have got it pretty much down to a science. Another bonus? Working from home has made me a morning person!
Waking up early, jumping in the shower, getting dressed, and getting on a rush hour train all before 9 am is a surefire way to make you hate mornings. I get it. That used to be my life.
Now, I get up earlier than I used to when I had an office job. But I get to put on a soft fluffy robe, make coffee in the comfort of my own home, sit down and watch the news for a few minutes or scroll through Instagram, whatever tickles my fancy at the moment. It’s RELAXING. It’s REJUVENATING. It’s VERY different than the former morning routine I just described. That’s like waking up and then having a panic attack shortly after.
So that’s going to be my first piece of advice below. Embrace those mornings, whatever it looks like for you!
5 Essential Tips For Working From Home
Create a morning routine. As I stated previously, I was literally never a morning person until I started working from home. It’s important to help set yourself up for the day, and it’s become my favorite part of the day now. The reason it’s helpful is that it replaces your old routine; the one you did before you actually had to be at your desk, if that makes sense. Your old routine of showering, getting dressed, doing your hair, commuting, etc is now replaced by (fill in the blanks here). It can be as simple as making coffee and sitting down to read the news for 10 minutes. Whatever gets you moving and your brain wheels turning.
Be comfortable. I don’t know why a lot of people think dressing in work attire while sitting on your couch makes you more productive. That would just make me angry. I understand there’s a “mindset” thing that happens when you’re working in your pajamas, but also YOU’RE WORKING IN YOUR PAJAMAS!! WHAT A TIME TO BE ALIVE!! Be thankful for that. Under the current circumstances I’m sure no one is thankful for this, but my point is, I have never dressed up just to sit at home, answer emails, and take calls where no one can see me. If it makes you feel better to do so, then by all means go for it. I’m just saying, for me personally, I have never had a lack of business casual attire affect my productivity.
Plan your day. I know that sounds beyond dumb, but really try to plan your day and make it manageable. Write down the things you want or need to do that day, and tackle them one by one. I advise against multitasking just because that’s a very easy way to get distracted in a place that’s already filled with distractions (your TV, your laundry, that leftover pasta sitting in your fridge, you get it). Sometimes I even plan out my day by the hour. I know that sounds crazy but when you do what I do (social media management) sometimes you have to delegate specific time to Facebook and IG. Yes, my life is THRILLING.
Create a pleasant work environment. Natural light helps a ton if you have it, and I should know considering I spent the last 2 years in a basement apartment. Brutal. Plants are also a nice way to spruce up your work station, and if you have kids or noisy roommates, I HIGHLY suggest investing in a pair of noise cancelling headphones. I have these Jabra Elite ones and they’re AMAZING. I’ve had Bose and I’m sorry, these are better.
Get outside. Even if it’s for just a few minutes. I know these are tough times to be out in public, but I cannot stress enough how much a little breath of fresh air will do for your mental health. Take a walk, go for a run if you’re physically able (I am not), grab lunch, or run a few errands on foot. I try to make it a point to get outside for at least 15-20 minutes. Unless it’s raining, then I sit my ass down. I have no time for that.
Hope this helps a bit! If you have any suggestions you think I missed, comment below!