Working from home, research has found, can boost employee productivity, improve work/life balance and foster better mental health (not to mention reduce pollution from commuters). WHAT??!!!!!!
Corona came, saw and eventually been kicked out or may be not!
As we continue to battle COVID 19 , for the past 3 months working from home became and still is becoming inevitable. I for one am still working remotely and I know a whole lot of people that are still doing the same.
To some people, the experience is not only new, but it’s also dreaded.
How has this affected/changed your life and business in general? What have you learnt and what is the way forward. Leave a comment down below or feel free to send me an email, let’s discuss.
However, today I want to touch base on some of the things I have noticed myself doing in my own comfort but in reality might not be advisable if one needs to be more productive and efficient.
The pros, of course, are very clear: Supreme flexibility, undeniable autonomy and a commute that consists of walking down the hallway or a flight of stairs.
The cons? Oh well lets all agree that it takes practice and requires a significant amount of self-awareness, discipline and laser-like focus.
Am I right?
Personally I have always been the kind person to enjoy working from anywhere but my office, mmm I KNOW WHAT YOU ARE THINKING! But i am more creative and productive in different environment. I am not particularly a sit down behind a computer all day every day. I prefer mingling, meeting actual people and discuss in person and connect but I guess RONA got jealous and we were all stack in our houses, working, meeting and partying from home.
But while we work from home, however much we can get comfortable and think mmmmh I can wake up and pull up my pc, note book and phone right in my bed and be productive; there are several mistakes that we make unknowingly or even knowingly.
Here are six mistakes we should all be aware of when working from home:
Working in pajamas, definitely not a good idea.
Just because you can get away with wearing your pajamas doesn’t mean you should. You may still be interfacing with colleagues, partners, or customers via video, you wouldn’t want to be rushing every time your Skype/Zoom rings. Plus, dressing comfortably yet professionally helps to get you in the right mindset to stay productive.
Remember, to be successful doesn’t mean you have to straight away start working in bed , or in pajamas and even the most successful people don’t do that. Instead, they get ready for the day the same way they would if they were heading into the office which, yes, involves dressing up in presentable clothes. You know what that does to you, “WORK MODE ACTIVATED “it the entire process that actually stimulates your body, mind and soul. It gets you inspired and even more productive. THANK ME LATER!
While the thought of working in your sweatpants without judgment might sound nice, your pajamas aren’t exactly professional attire, nor will they put your mind in “work mode.”
“Studies show that employees, no matter what profession they’re in, perform tasks better when they wear clothes that have “symbolic meaning.”
Leave a comment in the comment section, let’s discuss further.
Since you do not have to rush to beat traffic, time becomes of no importance as the result you end up either starting your work earlier or later than expected and finishing earlier or later.
We can all avoid this by setting work hours and sticking to them. Breakfast, lunch and small breaks must be maintained to ensure effectiveness of mind, body and soul and remember don’t watch TV unless your job requires you to. Working near a television inhibits our ability to concentrate. Resist the urge to have the TV on, even if it’s just for background noise.
Having a schedule allows you to have some time for self care, meditation and small breaks here and there. Taking breaks is great for your focus and well-being. Recharge by walking around the block or stepping outside on a patio or balcony.
Working from the bed or couch
So my lazy self snoozes the alarm till late and then bang no time to get out of my bed, what do I do? Grab my phone and PC and start working, next thing you know its past mid day and I am still in pajamas probably haven’t even brushed my teeth. eeewwwwww !
Now, having a designated workspace is something I cannot stress enough. Good for you if you can work productively from the couch or bed, because very few can.
There is no one-size-fits-all setup that works for everyone. It will take some trial and error to find a workspace layout that supports your needs, but the key is to have it resemble your office setup as much as possible. You don’t even need a private room; it can be a designated area in your home may be a bit far from the bed and couch, if possible to get you out of “THE RELAXATION ZONE.”
When you aren’t in the office, there’s usually even less physical activity: No conference meeting rooms to walk to, no coworkers to go on a coffee run with and no long hallways that lead to the printer or bathroom.
There have been countless times when I find myself with back pain and numbness in the legs because of sitting for too long without even realizing it. The amount of times i have forgotten to eat lunch can not be counted.
Not creating structure and boundaries
It’s easy to get distracted by personal matters when you’re working from home, because you’re so much more accessible to people outside of your work life.
That’s why you need structure a consistent schedule that you’re strict about to prevent distractions from disturbing your workflow. The easiest way to do this is to create a to-do list for each day. It should include very specific, measurable and achievable tasks. You may need to adjust tomorrow’s list depending on what you get done today.
Maintaining structure also means setting boundaries. Of course, there are a few exceptions, such as if you’re a single parent with a newborn. But for the most part, be clear with your partner, friends or those you live with about your work schedule. Consider setting a “Do Not Disturb” window of time where you can work freely without unnecessary interruptions.
Also, be extra judicious about what you do online. If you have a tendency to check social media, you may want to download an Internet blocking program helps a lot.
Taking the opportunity for granted
I’m not saying that i’m perfect or haven’t faced any challenges, and I absolutely agree with every first timer. Working from home for the very first time can be handful because it’s hard to manage time and stay disciplined.
Then again, we also have to look on the bright side of it , how much are you learning given that you finally have time to isolate yourself from your colleagues.
Below are some the take always one can gain while working from home.
Improved communication skills.
See while in the office we interact yes, but what are we talking about and in what manner?
Being home means you are far away from you colleagues, supervisors, managers and directors and even clients which means constant follow ups and official meetings will be conducted. This in return helps to boost your confidence due to constantly talking to colleagues and clients over digital communication.
You become a technology wizard
Working remotely comes with technological challenges. You may have a hard time connecting to your server. Your work computer screen just went black. Files seem to have disappeared. After spending hours on the phone with IT support, you gain potential skills enough to fix these common issues on your own. Who doesn’t want that?
Repurpose commute time for self care
I cant stress this enough, with the traffic in this country or rather in Africa, we literally spend at least an hour to and from. Now that you don’t have to leave the house what can you do with that time? Please don’t sleep, don’t let this reclaimed time go to waste. If reading, meditating, or practicing yoga aren’t currently part of your routine, now is a great time to try them out.
I will leave you to digest that .
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