The majority of people today will have to work from home at some point during their life, and in light of recent circumstances, more people will be working from home than ever before.
Therefore, it is important that we do our best to understand how we can adapt to working from home efficiently and productively, whilst maintaining communication with our colleagues, supporting our own and others mental well-being and following the latest government health advice.
In this blog, we have gathered what we feel are the most important tips to bear in mind when working remotely, and how we can adapt ourselves in times of uncertainty.
Set a morning routine to get you ready for the day ahead
It is not unknown that a high percentage of us commute to work, whether that’s driving or getting the train, however it may be a shock to the system when you get out of the routine of a 40-minute commute to work each morning. That’s why it is important to ensure you are replacing the time it usually takes you to commute with something else that will wake you up before you sit down at your desk.
Why not start your day with a 15-minute workout? There are numerous apps you can download for free on your App Store or Playstore that enable you to follow an exercise of your choice for various amounts of time. These act as great warm-ups to get you ready and in the right mindset for the day ahead. Take a look at our exercise tips below.
We also recommend allocating the first hour of your day to get your biggest task (yes, the one you’ve been avoiding) out of the way, and once the hour is up then you can move onto your next task. This ensures you are not spending too much time thinking about it, and you can always come back to it at another set time if need be.
Keep your work space tidy and ensure you have the correct equipment to work on (and preferably away from the bedroom)
You may not be surprised to find that working in the comfort of your bedroom isn’t the most productive place to work, that is why it’s important to dedicate a space in your house just for working, this ensures there is no blur between your work and home-life. This may be tricky for some people with limited space in their house, so if you do find that you must work in your bedroom, corner off a section in the room that is away from your bed and if possible put a divider in between… this could even be a bedsheet.
If possible, it also helps to add a plant (or plants) to your work environment, as these are proven to help concentration, productivity, reduce stress levels and even boost your mood. Plus, don’t they just look great?
‘Talk to your employer, friends and family to ask for their help to access the things you will need to make your stay at home a success.’
Get dressed for work each morning to get into the right mindset
Although it’s easy to work in your pajamas, getting dressed for work each morning can help put you in the right mindset to start the day. No, you don’t have to wear your full suit and tie, but making the effort to get out of the clothes you sleep in is a sure way to get your mind ready for the day ahead.
Get as much fresh air as you can
We know it’s not as easy as it sounds, but you should aim to get out of the house as much as possible during the day. Currently, the government advice states that citizens are allowed ‘One form of exercise a day, for example a run, walk, or cycle – alone or with members of your household.’
Ensuring you are getting fresh air each day is essential for re-energising, and also helps to boost your mood, as you may struggle to produce great work if you don’t take your eyes off the screen for the full day. Despite this, you must ensure you are keeping within the guidelines set out by the government and not leaving the house more than needed.
Move your phone away from your desk
It’s so easy to check your phone for updates on Instagram every few minutes, and though it may seem harmless, this can be detrimental to your productivity.
It can be as simple as moving your phone to another room so you don’t have the convenience of having it in front of you. If this doesn’t work for you and you still find yourself scrolling endlessly through social media, take a minute to log out of all your accounts, because we can guarantee you won’t want to log in and out every five minutes.
Write your to-do list and plan your day around it
We all love a good to-do list, don’t we? To-do lists are a great way to help you manage your day as well as your workload, and also help you to steer away from feeling overwhelmed.
Five minutes before the end of each day, take the time to write a list of the tasks that you need to do over the coming days and/or weeks and when you begin working the next day you will have all your priorities set out for the day.
Writing a list helps give you an overview of the time you need to set out for each task, and eliminates gaps of procrastination that you are likely to face otherwise.
We’ve found some great examples of to-do lists that you can copy here.
Stay connected with your colleagues, really, we can’t stress this enough
It’s important to stay connected with your colleagues and other businesses and partners you may be working with, especially in times where online and over the phone communication is the only means of communication you may have.
Exercise, exercise, exercise!
Chair tricep dips – Sit on the edge of a chair holding on to the front with your hands. Place your feet out in front of you (bent legs for easier option or straight legs to make it harder) and lower your elbows to a 90-degree angle before pushing back up.
Tabletop press-ups – Incline press-ups can be done anywhere around your home; on a table, a bed, a chair or even a wall. To use a table, place your hands on the table with your legs stretched out behind you, keeping your body straight. Lower your weight down, keeping your elbows tight to your body, and press back up.
Living room wall sits – Find a wall with a big enough space for you to lean on. Sit against the wall like you would in a chair with your legs at 90 degrees, and hold. Give it time and you’ll soon feel the burn!
Milk bottle Russian twists – Sit on the floor holding a milk bottle (or any bottle with liquid in). Lean back with a straight back and engage your core. Rotate your torso and try to touch the floor on each side with the milk bottle. Make it harder by lifting your feet off the floor.
Keep up to date with government advice
Please be mindful when you are following our tips that you are actively staying in line with the most up-to-date government advice surrounding the current situation of the COVID-19 epidemic. You can find more in-depth information about what advice you need to be following here.