We are now in the 2nd quarter of 2020, and a very large percentage of the world’s workforce are working from home as a measure to help reduce the spread of Coronavirus. This is an unprecedented reality for many and is coming with a lot of negative feelings – mental and emotional.
The fear, stress and frustration is understandable because for most of us, we have never experienced any situation quite like this before. If unchecked, this can negatively affect our work and who knows how long the lockdown will last for. Whether you are an entrepreneur or in a career, you can still do meaningful work despite being away from the office. You can choose to rise above the gloom and doom, and find ways to successfully adapt to the new reality.
Below, we share five tips to help you achieve and maintain mental productivity.
- Pretend Like You Are Going To The Office
The association you make between work and an office can make you more productive, and there’s no reason that feeling should be lost when telecommuting. When it’s morning, get up, make your bed and get ready for work just like any other day. If you have a home office or a work desk, aim to be there at a set time. Avoid the urge to work in bed, unless that’s the only space where you have privacy. It is not always easy to avoid working in bed, I know i break the rules a few times, but if you start working in bed you’ll likely get sleepy or have a hard time feeling alert. Whatever you can do to create a sense of “going to work” will help and for most people that means following the routine you do when you work from the office. It makes you feel ready, so do that first.
- Have A Well Structured Schedule Than Usual
When working from home, you are your own manager. To stay on schedule, segment what you will do and when, through the course of the day. If you have an online calendar, create personal events and reminders that tell you when to shift gears and start on new tasks.
Usually our time and the structure of our day are influenced by other people, that’s going to change. The normal structure that you usually have may not hold up here and because you might be in solitude more often than usual, you need to build in a lot more structure into your day.
- Take Clear Breaks
Often, while telecommuting, you can get so caught up in work that you forget to take breaks; that too is not good for productivity. Don’t let the fact that you are working and sleeping in the same building prevent you from taking time to relax. And no, scrolling through Instagram or YouTube does not count as a break. You should aim to take a 15 minute break every 90 minutes. Ideally, your break should involve no screens at all and let you get some fresh air. Take a walk around the house, play with a pet or talk to someone. When you walk away from your desk and computer during your break, on return you’ll find that you’re much more productive.
- Interact With Other People
You’re working from home, not the moon. Interacting with other people during the day is allowed, even if they’re not your coworkers. As distracting as some office environments can be, there’s nothing like having coworkers you enjoy working with and catching up with throughout the day. Continue the practice as you work from home. Make time to connect with others, whether through FaceTime, WhatsApp calls, or even emails, just try to reach out to people. It improves your emotional balance and can positively affect your productivity at work.
- Pick A Finishing Time
You might be under the impression that working from home establishes more work-life balance, but be careful with that assumption. Working from home can get you so caught up in your activity, that you lose complete track of time. While at work, coworkers packing up and leaving the office reminds you to do the same, so set an alarm at the end of the day to indicate your normal work day is coming to an end. You don’t have to stop at exactly that time, but knowing the work day is technically over can help you start the process of saving your work and calling it quits for the evening.
Whatever you do, please stay safe during this period and going forward. Stay home and stay safe until the pandemic is over.
Do you need to rethink your business model or business strategy during this time? Please get in touch with us and we’d be happy to serve you.