• Shane Bradbury

14 Tips to help when Working From Home

It is hard to imagine that many of us are already, or probably will be very soon working from home!

Even if you work from home often, not many of us are used to working from home for extended periods of time or an unknown amount of time.

So how can we ensure we have control over:

  • Remaining productive

  • Avoiding burnout

  • Lessening the feeling of isolation

Here are 14 tips that may help:

  1. Set up a work station – this space should be used for work only, (that way when you’re there, your brain associates it with work and not a different activity). It should be comfortable, have good lighting and ventilation, and be free from distractions. THIS SHOULD NOT BE YOUR BED, as your brain will start to link it to work and it will mess with your sleep

  2. Dress for success – studies have shown people are often more productive at home if they dress as if they are going into the office. Read - staying in your pj’s all day is likely to make you feel sluggish and ready for bed!

  3. Establish a schedule – Every day, get up at the same time, start and finish work at the same time, eat at the same time, exercise at the same time. This way your mind and body will know what’s coming next, you’ll feel more in control and things will just feel easier

  4. Schedule breaks – it’s easy to get into a rhythm and just power through, next thing you know you’ve been sitting for 4 hours and you’re completely drained (remember sitting is the new smoking). Work out what your ideal concentration time is, eg 40 minutes, and then set a timer on your phone to get up stretch, make a coffee, put on a load of washing, get some fresh air etc

  5. Create a ‘To Do’ list – crossing things off a list will keep you focused on what needs to be done and give you a sense of accomplishment

  6. Create a ‘Don’t Do’ list – distractions are everywhere when you’re at home. Creating a ‘Don’t Do’ list will ensure you don’t ‘loose time’ by getting caught up in a distraction, eg don’t go on social media between this time and that time’, don’t turn on the TV until after…, don’t spend longer than 10 minutes doing the laundry etc

  7. Find time to exercise! This is a biggy, movement is important physically as well as mentally. Try allocating 10 minutes 3 times a day to move your body. Be it a quick HIIT session, yoga or a walk around the block. You’ll find not only will you feel better, sleep better, you’ll also be more focused.

  8. Schedule a meeting with someone every day – even if it is a 10 minute Skype call with a colleague. It is easy (and can happen very quickly) to feel isolated and disconnected with the outside world, chatting with a workmate or client, sharing what you are working on, will make you feel more accountable and you’ll be more productive.

  9. Choose foods that will give you energy not take it away – when thinking about food, think about how you want to feel after eating it. I’m guessing you want to avoid foods that will make you feel sleepy and foggy. Choose (as often as you can) fresh, unprocessed food, foods that are not high in sugar or salt and foods that will satisfy your hunger - not bloat you or make you feel uncomfortable.

  10. Move away from your work station to eat – this will ensure you are thoughtful about what you are eating and when you are eating. It will also help you avoid mindless ‘picking’ and snacking.

  11. Pack things away at the end of every work day – this will help you keep boundaries between work time and down time.

  12. HYDRATE! You know by now the power of H2O, keep drinking water!

  13. Get outside – it’s amazing what even 10 minutes of fresh air and Vitamin D can do for you. Why not eat your lunch outside every day and or take your calls outside? Whatever you do, get outside every day and breath!

  14. Get a good mouse! The trackpad thingy gets old real quick!!

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