For most people, Covid-19 has meant meeting work deadlines amidst household chores and homeschooling. If you are new to working from home, you are probably struggling with how to draw a line between your personal and professional spaces. With little or no socialization, no office happy hours, no in-person brainstorming sessions, there is loneliness and little motivation to work. Staying productive is a new struggle to say the least. However, you can be productive even during this uncertain period. Follow these 6 tips for inspiration:
Designate a dedicated workspace
As mentioned, separating work from personal life is a daunting task. Moreover, if both of them are colliding, your productivity will be affected negatively. To ensure that you find a balance between the two, have a dedicated workspace away from distractions. If you can find a room that you can lock, the better. However, if you don’t have that luxury, a less frequented corner in the living room, your bedroom or the kitchen counter can still do. A dedicated workspace will help your mind switch to work mode when you step in and you will be able to focus and be productive.
Take care of your back
A small percentage of people find working curled up in pillows on the bed or sofa comfortable. It is good to ditch those however comfortable they feel. If you work from the sofa or your bed, you will develop neck and back pain that will eventually leave you fatigued and unmotivated. It is very important that you find a comfortable chair with a firm backrest. Your workspace should be ergonomically set as much as possible.
Stick to your routine
Now that there are no office commutes in the morning, you can be tempted to oversleep- you just need 20 seconds to get to your workspace after all. You can even skip breakfast and your morning rituals to catch up with them later in the day. Changing your routine, however, can derail productivity to some length. During this ‘new normal’, ensure that you stick to your daily routine. Wake up at your usual time and follow your morning rituals, take a shower and then step to work. Ensure that you take breaks in between your day just as you would coffee and lunch breaks if you were at the office.
Change the scenery
If you are feeling unproductive, a change of scenery could be all you need to get back your motivation. This can pose a challenge since your favorite coffee shop or coworking space has been closed due to the lockdown. However, coworking spaces have only closed the shared spaces. For instance, some coworking spaces in the US are allowing members with private offices to work from there. In addition, they are limiting the number of people who visit these private offices to ensure the social distancing measure is observed. You can take advantage of this to rent a private space especially if you are having a hard time setting up a proper workspace at home.
Working from home means not as many daily interactions with your colleagues. This can be particularly difficult if you are the extroverted type. Working in isolation can slowly diminish your productivity. If you have people living with you, ensure that you interact with them during your breaks. Use video calls to keep in touch with friends and family. Ensure you are connecting with your colleagues to discuss projects and just have virtual hangouts. This will do good to your mental health and help you stay motivated and productive.
This period might get you neglecting your healthy lifestyle. If you want to stay energized and productive, it is paramount that you stay healthy at this time. Ensure that you are having a balanced diet as much as you can. Exercise regularly to boost your energy and to stay motivated. Do not work for long hours and ensure you get enough sleep. All these will go a long way in helping you stay productive.
This uncertain time has turned lives upside down. Even those who were used to working from home now have to deal with distractions from kids and housemates. If you are having a hard time staying productive, you are not alone. It is okay to feel anxious and demoralized since this is not the normal you are used to, so you shouldn’t pressure yourself. Take a day at a time and follow the above guidelines to help you stay productive until times get back to normal.