I have been working from home for the past five years and while I find myself to be very productive this way it can be an adjustment for others who are used to commuting into an office. I love the ability to be flexible and be on my own schedule, but it can take some getting used to.
In a time where many people are now working from home and practicing social distancing, I figured I would share my advice for making the most of the experience. Take some time to observe your habits to better find out what works for you.
These are tips from my experience of working from home. I hope they can help you in this weird and difficult time:
1. Create a divide between work and home life
It is important to know when to shut off work since there’s no physical divide of going into an office. I used to typically stop working when Aaron came home from work so we could have our time together but now since he’s also working from home we are finding the right time for us to shut off and cook dinner together.
2. Take breaks
I usually go for a walk to get out of the house but since that is limited just get up and stretch. I have been keeping to my Melissa Wood Health Pilates workouts on her app. They are great to do from home and can be done with or without weights and equipment.
This wakes up my mind and gets me ready for the day. Take a small break to sit and eat lunch – this one is hard for me because the best lighting is during those hours so I usually end up shoveling lunch into my mouth but I’m trying to practice what I preach!
3. Find a routine that works for you
I get up early and do my workout then have my breakfast and coffee while I check emails and get the day going. Creating a schedule for yourself is important because it gives your life structure.
4. Get dressed
This one is different for different people. Changing out of pajamas into something else helps to create that work/ home divide mentally. While some like to fully get dressed I still mostly wear leggings and sweaters while I’m working because I find it easier to run around the kitchen and get those photography angles.
5. Keep an organized space
Clutter stresses me out – and living and working in the same space can get messy so do what you can to keep things clean, organized and anxiety free. This is especially true of smaller apartments/ work spaces!
Don’t work from bed. You are way more inclined to push everything aside in favor of a nap if you are working from bed. When you get up in the morning make your bed so it doesn’t call to you.
I tend to work from the couch because as I do tedious parts of my job like editing photos I like to have something I can half pay attention to on in the background (think crime dramas like Law and Order or medical shows like Gray’s Anatomy where you can partly follow along but still get the gist). Others like to listen to music (taking any Spotify playlist suggestions!).
6. Limit non-work related social media
I can get into a hole with this one since social media is such a large component of my business. I try to only look at my personal social media channels when I am having my coffee, taking a walk, or after work when Aaron and I watch TV.
7. Reach out!
This is a major one! Working from home can be socially isolating and unfortunately due to COVID-19 the options for interacting with others are limited. While I am lucky that Aaron is also working from home and I have someone to interact with many people live alone and are now working alone as well. Call and FaceTime your friends!
Whereas I would normally schedule dinners with friends and lunches or coffee dates with others on similar schedules as myself (looking at you @whatcouldbebutter and @forkedup) we have to get more creative during this time.
My friends are working on a virtual happy hour where we can all chat and catch up over a video conferencing call much like we would do if we could leave our houses.
You have to be willing to take the initiative to reach out to others. Having a pet is also great – they may be an animal but it’s nice to have someone else around!
I hope this helps! If you can think of any additions to the ones I have listed feel free to leave them in the comments! Sending lots of love in this time of uncertainty and adjustment.
2 is what I struggle most with. But I think I’ll use #7 as a way to break up the day ☺️ Thanks!
This is the best needed this!!! #4 changing out of PJs🙈😯
I never really worked from home before this so these tips are awesome!
I have been so unproductive since the quarantine thank you for this!!