At a time, when we are all being asked to social distance, there are many who I know that are having to transition to working from home. While on any normal day, most would love the opportunity to work from home, having to very quickly can be a HUGE transition and for some, a hard transition.
I’ve worked from home not only in corporate America but also being a small business owner, most often, we work from home. I’ve been working from home for about 6 years, so I wanted to share with things I’ve learned and tips to transitioning.
GET DRESSED Yep! You read that right! Get up and go through your normal routine of getting ready for work. But why?
- Getting dressed gets you in the mindset for WORK. This is the first thing I had to do when I moved to working from home, because if I stayed in my PJ’s, I stayed in a “cozy” mindset.
- If your company plans on doing conference calls, you’re already dressed and ready for the day too!
- Getting dressed keeps you in a routine. Working from home, your routine easily gets thrown out of whack, so this is one simple task, that keeps you in a routine.
- I will admit, after working from home for YEARS, my home attire is pretty much leggings and a tee – but I STILL keep my routine of getting dressed for the day. I needed to wear work clothes in the first year to keep myself in the work mindset.
TAKE BREAKS AND LUNCHES Ok, this one seems obvious, but being at home, it’s so easy to either skip a break or lunch and just work, work, work. AND, when you take these, actually TAKE A BREAK. This the one tip I feel like I struggled with the most and you know what I found? I was EXHAUSTED!
- To keep yourself from feeling burned out, you NEED a break! This is time that helps your brain to shut off and take time away from work. Your mind and body need this time! Use it!
- You know that list of chores for the house you have planned? Yeah, don’t do those during your breaks. At first, it seems like an excellent time to do it, but going back to the first bullet, you need this time to regenerate and recharge. A quick flip of a load of laundry is fine, but don’t spend your WHOLE break and lunch period on housework. You’ll be sucked out of energy everyday by 10AM.
- Have little ones at home? I know at this time, a lot of kids are home and out of school. They need breaks too! Take this time to have time together away from work and schoolwork to have a snack, eat lunch, or just interact with one another.
- and….. have you ever wished you could just take a NAP at work? Guess what? At home, you can! JUST DON’T FORGET TO SET AN ALARM!
GIVE YOURSELF A QUIET SPACE TO WORK As tempting as it sounds to work from bed, in your PJs, try find a space that is quiet from distractions to setup your desk. Do you have a small nook, maybe a long/wide hallway, a corner of your dining room, or somewhere else that you can setup? If at all possible, try to minimize distractions in the area. Since after all, you are working, you don’t want to end up having the attention span of a squirrel because there is just too much happening around you.
I’ll admit, I have worked from bed (out of bed rest need), and the struggle was REAL even after working from home for 6 years. Even though the bedroom is quiet, my body knew that I was in bed, and it was HARD to focus.
MAKE YOUR WORKSPACE JOYFUL AND INSPIRING At work, do you have your cubicle decorated with pictures of your kids, things you enjoy, or things that inspire you? Then you should have this at home too! Even if working from home is temporary, take some time to make your space a happy space to be.
- Always wanted to corner office at work? Then set your desk up near the window! Let that sunshine pour in and bring in all that joy!
- Grab one of your favorite plants from around the house and bring it closer to you.
- Put some inspiring quotes up on your wall around you to keep you motivated!
- Why not some photos? Even if your partner or kids are right behind you, pick a favorite photo and put those up in front of you.
- You don’t need to spend loads of money to setup your desk, just take what you have around the house and repurpose it for your new workspace.
Lastly, give yourself time. It’s going to be an adjustment at first. Especially if you’re new to working from home PLUS have kids who are also trying to go through the same adjustment with schoolwork from home. Try to implement these tips for the whole family. Even if you, your partner, and kids all don’t have your own space, try to find small ways to personalize the spaces you do have.
It may feel a little frustrating at first, but the quicker you stick to a plan, the quicker you will get through the adjustment. If you’re feeling exhausted, pull back and evaluate and implement something different. We’re all working right now through lots of adjustments and I promise you, you are not alone.
I hope these tips help you transition to working from home and how you can best ease that process!
Stay tuned for more tips coming soon!