The recent pandemic has forced many of us to “shelter in place” and the best way to stop the spread of this terrible virus is to avoid contact with others. As many companies have closed their doors, some have allowed their employees to work from home. For those of us that are lucky enough to have the opportunity to work from home, we understand the mental, physical, and emotional impact of being remote. This can be a challenge for those who are not used to working from home. Kids, pets and technology can all add distractions. Here is how I stayed focused working from home during this time.
- Take a Shower in the Morning and Change into Work Clothes. This may seem like a simple step, but this mirrors your normal workday routine. By jumping in the shower at your normal time, and changing into normal work clothes, you can trick your mind into thinking it’s just a normal day at the office.
- Stick to a Regular and Healthy Meal Schedule. Make sure your belly is satisfied and you’re hydrated as you begin your work day. There’s nothing worse than not being able to concentrate due to feeling hungry. If you need a quick fix, try ordering food for delivery or meal prep on the weekends to be more prepared for the upcoming week. Eating healthy contributes to staying healthy, and there are many simple and easy recipes online. One of my favorite easy recipes is the Greek Chicken Rice Bowl. I’ve linked the recipe here for you to try!
- Work in a Dedicated Area (Away from the Bedroom). Setting up a desk in a spare bedroom, much like an office, is the best way to maintain productivity and isolate yourself from distractions. If you don’t have an extra room with a door to block out extra noise, the kitchen table will work as a makeshift office. Be sure to avoid your main bedroom, as this tends to lead to distractions and tiredness.
- Be Active. Productivity is part one, but it’s important to stay active as well. In addition to taking walking breaks, here are a few ideas to burn some calories during your breaks. Try to take at least two 10-15 minute active breaks during the day to go on a walk or do a quick online workout routine. Watch some simple exercises via YouTube. There are some great, free workouts out there, but you have to make sure you’re comfortable with the exercises before diving in. Some of my favorite YouTube videos are by Chloe Ting. I’ve linked a video of hers here for you try!
- Build Transitions. A big issue with working from home is people do not turn off at the end of the day. Make sure to set a time to shut down your computer and hold yourself accountable. Before parking yourself on the couch, go on a walk and listen to music or a podcast, or complete 2-3 household chores to mirror your normal commute time. The work will be there in the morning. This will help with burnout and keep your mind and body ready to hit the ground running in the morning.