6 Ways to Thrive While You Work from Home
Zzz. Zzz. Zzz. Your phone vibrates and you glance at the clock. The alarm hasn’t gone off yet, but emails are coming in and your calendar reminds you of today’s deadline and an afternoon meeting. Your mind begins to spin, creating a mental to-do list before your feet hit the floor. You throw on a t-shirt and decide to skip the shower. Duty calls. Ambling into the kitchen, you hardly notice dark coffee percolating on the counter. You sit down at the kitchen table and open your laptop. When you first started working from home, it was a novelty. It created a fresh challenge and gave you a bit of reprieve from the normal stresses of a jam-packed schedule. But 10 weeks later? You’re over it. New stressors threaten your ability to find balance, connection, and motivation. If working from home is still your reality, here are six things you can implement today so that you don’t just survive this time, you thrive in it.
1. Establish Your Workspace
You may not have the luxury of a home office and that’s okay. However, it is important to designate a space to work that does not overlap with a place of leisure. This will help you mentally separate rest from work. Plus, it tells your family or roommates that when you’re in this space, you’re unavailable. If you can close a door, that’s even better, but find a place that resembles a desk as much as possible. Head to that space when it’s time to “clock-in.”
2. Stick to a Routine
Try to recreate the same routine you had when you were leaving for the office. Take a shower in the morning. Don’t wear your pajamas or sweat pants. Eat breakfast. Establish a way that helps you transition from home to work like a commute typically does. It is also important to establish a routine throughout your day. Otherwise, you’ll find that you work through lunch or work late into the evening. Following a daily routine will help you stay focused and motivated.
3. Find Your Style
The beauty of working from home is that you have more flexibility to work in a way, or during times, that you can be most productive. If you are more focused and energized in the morning, then start your day a little earlier and multiply your productivity. If you work better during long periods, then take a traditional lunch hour in the middle of your day. But if you will be more successful by taking small breaks throughout the day, you now have the freedom to do so. Make the most of your day by leaning into your preferred work style.
4. Stay Connected
It’s crucial to stay connected to your team, your manager, and your co-workers during this time. Utilize Facebook, LinkedIn, Zoom, and other modes of communication to have conversations you would have enjoyed in the breakroom. Take the initiative to share status updates with your team or your manager. Keeping everyone in the loop about your progress, and checking to see how you can help others, will prevent you from feeling isolated while you practice social distancing.
5. Meet Your Own Needs
When work-life bleeds into home life, it’s hard to separate your priorities. Deadlines push you to keep working and you’re held accountable for every assignment. Odds are you don’t have anyone to hold you accountable for practicing self-care. To thrive during this season, you must take care of your own needs. Walk away from your computer and sit outside to read a book, go for a run, make a nutritious lunch, or take a power nap. Set aside time every day to meet your own needs so that you avoid burnout.
6. Log Off
While you build in routine, designate a time to log off and shut down. Just because lines are blurred between work and home doesn’t mean that you have to be available to answer every phone call or email 24/7. You may not be physically leaving the office, but it’s okay to set your work aside and come back tomorrow. Maintaining a healthy work-life balance includes logging off at the end of the day and being fully present at home. It’s certainly harder to mentally shut work off when your commute is a walk down the hall, but hey, it beats sitting in traffic!
As you continue to navigate work through social distancing, our team at Trinity Training & Development is ready to help your team thrive. Contact us today to learn more about how our programs can increase motivation and communication throughout your team.