If you’re not used to working from home and all of the sudden have found yourself doing just that, it may take some discipline to find your groove. As someone who works for a company who has invested in remote working from the beginning, I’m honored to share my insights. Here are some tips to make sure you’re still a team player, while working in your pajamas.
- Don’t work in your pajamas. Wake up and follow the routine you’ve always followed before heading into the office. You should treat going to work in your home office the same as going into an office.
- Schedule out your calendar. Set aside time to tackle the items you need to get done- literally block out time on your calendar to do it. Set one to three realistic goals per day and hold yourself to them. Give yourself a lunch break and actually take it. Move to your kitchen, go for a walk, but give yourself time to eat without working.
- Use technology to stay in touch. Schedule virtual (video) check-ins and meetings, multiple times per day. You will want (and need) social interaction, and it’s important to keep the communication strong. Slack, Zoom, Google Hangouts, UberConference–many of these have free subscription options.
- Get creative and have fun. Perhaps have a photo sharing contest with your colleagues for the best or most creative home office setup. Or how about a Virtual Pet Happy Hour?
- Do things that excite you about working from home. It can be lonely at times and you may get a little stir crazy. Fill your mug with your favorite coffee drink or tea. Jam out to your favorite playlist. Most importantly, give yourself permission to take a break when you need it to go for a walk or for a quick gym workout. Maybe even a YouTube yoga session.
Part 2 – Tips For Working from Home Parents:
If you’re a parent, working from home and now have your kid(s) with you, like I do, due to school cancellations, here are some things I’ve done and plan to do that you may find useful.
- Join community Facebook groups. The parents in my neighborhood have really rallied together. We’ve started posts and Google spreadsheets to capture who is available to help with care and who needs care. There are many stay at home parents and high school students willing to help.
- Connect with displaced students (there’s a Facebook group for this, too). Many colleges and universities have sent students ‘home’, yet many can’t go home. If you have room for a student or two, help them out. They could also be a good resource to help you out with child care.
- Get creative. Build a fort under your desk and fill it with toys, snacks, pillows and blankets, for example. My toddler had a blast playing in it while I worked away. Here’s a list of 50 things to do to keep your kid(s) busy. https://milanastravels.com/50-activities-to-keep-kids-busy/
- Identify e-learning. With schools cancelled, many teachers are now offering virtual tutoring. If you can’t find a tutor, there are many online resources for homeschooling.