05 May Working-from-Home Like a Pro: 15 More Tips
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread across the world, you may find yourself (still) working from home. We’ve collected a bunch of new tips on how to WFH while staying productive and healthy.
This is a quick list of WFH tips. For a deeper dive, check out our previous post: Working From Home: 3 Tips To Stay Productive And Healthy.
Tips for the newly WFH
1. Designate a Workspace
Set up an area of your house to use as a workspace. Sitting down in this space sends a clear signal to your brain that it’s time to focus. Stay away from your designated workspace when you’re not working.
2. Move around
If creating a mobile workspace helps you concentrate, set up a few spaces in your house where you can work. This may help your posture since you’ll change up your seated position. Giving yourself a set amount of time in each location may help you manage your time.
3. Prepare Your Day
Take the time to go about your normal morning routine, take a shower, and get dressed for the day. If you can’t work out the way you used to, try working out at home. Designate some work clothes, even if they’re more comfortable than your typical professional attire. If you prefer to do your hair and makeup, then go for it, even if it’s only for you.
4. Set a schedule
Instead of having a vague plan, create a daily schedule and put it in writing. Generate a digital schedule or jot it down with pen and paper, and stick it in a visible place.
5. Create an eating plan
Eating healthy is important when you’re working from home. Plan out your meals and snacks ahead of time, such as at the beginning of the week or workday. This prevents you from working to the point of hunger and then scrambling to decide what to eat. You should also avoid eating at your workstation.
Tips for people with kids
6. Working with a baby
Use a baby carrier or wrap so you can keep your child close to you. To keep your hands free, use a dictation app. If you’re on a call, you can let your recipient know that you have a baby at home in case there are any interruptions or noises.
Use their nap times efficiently, and try to schedule work that requires intense focus or conference calls during these times.
You may want to have a conversation with your boss about a modified schedule that works for both of you while working from home with a baby.
7. Working with older children
If you have an older child that can take on some extra responsibility, you can set them up with some very clear instructions and activities for help taking care of younger children or completing household chores.
8. Pay attention to their emotional needs
Your children may need some extra love, affection, and attention during this time — even if a tantrum leaves everyone involved feeling exhausted or frustrated. Play calming music throughout your home to help stimulate feelings of relaxation.
9. Balance structure and play
Encourage your kids to entertain themselves, but help them manage their time wisely. Set up appropriate activities to keep them engaged.
Children can also be overstimulated, so limit their screen time and allow for occasional boredom to arise. Be firm in your approach and set clear boundaries, expectations, and consequences.
10. Sharing a screen
If you share a screen with a child, make it clear that your work is a priority. Give them time to use the screen as it fits into your schedule. Use this time to do a task that doesn’t require a screen or take a short break.
Tips for people with anxiety
11. The state of the world
Make your own decisions about what type of media you follow, especially while you’re working. If you don’t want to look at any news related to COVID-19, set up apps that will block that news on your devices.
Similarly, let your loved ones know if you don’t want to have any discussions surrounding the virus or infection.
12. Stay informed, not overwhelmed
If you want to stay informed but find the news overwhelming, allocate a set amount of time each morning or evening when you can read the news.
Or ask a friend if you can call them for a quick 10-minute briefing. They’ll be able to deliver any news gently and help you stay informed without feeling overwhelmed.
13. Your loved ones
If you’re concerned about the health of your loved ones, tell them about your concerns. Make sure they’re taking all the necessary precautions and will touch base with you if they start to experience any COVID-19 symptoms.
Take the time to let them know how much they mean to you, either verbally or in writing.
14. Being on lockdown
Enjoying a day of work at home feels different when it’s due to a government order that’s aimed at stopping the spread of a virus.
Create a happy space, whether this is looking out a window, visualizing a peaceful nature scene, or looking at a relaxing picture.
15. Get in touch
Get in touch with a mental health professional or find someone who is supportive and can help you manage your feelings, especially if these feelings are getting in the way of your productivity.
As a member of the Proactive Health Management Plan, you have access to the PHMP Health Coaches. PHMP Health Coaches can provide the emotional support you may need to navigate the world that COVID-19 has changed. You can reach a PHMP Health Coach by calling 1-855-498-4643 or sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
No matter how you seek help or from whom, it’s important to be honest with how you’re feeling. Knowing that someone is only a phone call or video chat away may help you manage feelings of anxiety.