In a bid to curb the coronavirus outbreak, employers are putting in place precautions to stop further spreading of COVID-19 - working from home being one of them. If you are also self-isolating, whether that’s due to showing mild symptoms and are able to work from home, the below tips will also be of use.
For more detailed information on protecting your physical wellbeing and for steps employees and employers can take to help present the infection and spread of COVID-19, see https://covid19.govt.nz/
Working from home policies have been around for a long time before COVID-19 came about, so here's our top tips on how to get into your ‘normal’ work routine and stay focused on your work.
Top five tips for working from home:
- Set your alarm
- Dedicated working space
- Keep in touch via IM and video calls
- Switch off from social media
- Limit pet distraction
set the alarm.
Stick to your everyday ‘work routine’ - don’t go as far as putting your shoes and jacket on, but set your alarm, get dressed, make that must have morning coffee and get your laptop set up. You’ll feel like you’ve accomplished a lot and you haven’t left the house! Taking these steps will put you in the right mind frame to get your work done.
find a place perfect to get work done.
Don’t mix business with pleasure. Your home is your sanctuary - your escape from a busy work day. Get yourself set up in a specific room or surface in your home to work - make sure it’s in another room to your planned evening downtime (if you have the space to do so). It’s not a good idea to bring the laptop to bed and get too comfy - it’s not good for productivity. A brightly lit room, a constant supply of water (and snacks) can keep you going.
Keep in touch with your colleagues - working from home can feel isolating and make you feel cut off from your team. Tap into video calls and instant chat tools to let them know you’re online and still up for connecting and being creative just like you would normally be in the office.
Social media can be your worst enemy at the best of times but especially when you’re in your own space, out of sight from manager’s watchful eye. The best thing you can do is to switch off notifications of your social apps and keep your phone on silent. Out of sight, out of mind?
If you thought social media was distracting, let’s talk about pets. As comforting as pets may be and they’ll use every ounce of their cuteness to get your attention - you must resist. Although it’s been proven that interacting with pets in the office is beneficial to your mental health, when you’re at home it can become a full time task if you’re not disciplined. Ensure you both have your space - set a 5 minute timer every now and then to give yourself permission to be distracted. A top tip for cats is have a ‘decoy keyboard’ in place for those accidentally ‘hit send’ moments.