COVID-19 has humbled us all and provided a stark reminder that not everything lasts forever. For some, their entire way of life has changed. With many businesses requiring employees to work from home, it’s an understatement to say that we’ve gone through an adjustment period. Some find it much easier to adapt to work at home life than others, but luckily, we’ve got seven tips to help even the most uncomfortable remote workers adapt to their new routine.
Whether you’re at home full-time or just part-time, these tips can help you make the most out of your work-at-home experience and prevent you from going a bit crazy cooped up in your house or apartment. Let’s dive in!
7 Tips for Adapting to COVID-19 Work-Life at Home
Working from home probably means sitting down for long periods of time. This can reduce blood flow to the brain and other important areas of the body, affecting energy levels, focus, and more. The solution? Get up and move! Even if you just walk around your living room for 10 minutes, you’ll be restoring the blood flow to your limbs and other areas of the body, and (hopefully) help restore your focus.
Sitting for long periods of time can actually increase your risk for conditions like heart disease and diabetes, so don’t let quarantine get the best of you; get up, get active, and maintain an exercise routine. Remember that some movement is better than none, so even if you can’t squeeze in a set of push-ups or curls, you can at least get up and walk around throughout the day.
The alarm rings. You turn, peering through the post-waking haze toward your alarm clock. It reads 6:15 am. A groan escapes your throat, the thought of tearing yourself away from your warm bed nearly crippling you. But wait…you don’t have to be at the office! You’re working from home now, so that means you can sleep in, right?
This is a dangerous thought pattern that can lead to decreased productivity and lethargy. It’s crucial that you maintain some kind of schedule while working from home; otherwise, you might never get anything done. If you wake up at 6:15 normally for work, get up at the same time. Go to bed at the same time, too. Getting enough sleep is still critical to healthy work productivity and sleep us just healthy in general. Maintain a work schedule as well. If you work from 7-4 normally, do the same while you’re at home.
Don’t forget to take breaks, of course, but don’t overdo it. Self-discipline is truly necessary here, so it’s a skill you’ll want to master quickly if you’re to be successful working from home.
The internet offers so many wonderful tools for staying in touch with those we love, and we should be utilizing them during the quarantine. After a while, you’ll start to feel isolated and alone, and this is not a good feeling to have when you’re unable to see friends and family. Using video chat tools, you can still see those you love while maintaining social distance.
Many social media platforms offer free video chat, but you can also use conferencing services to “visit” with grandma or even run remote meetings online.
It’s difficult to be productive at home if your employer hasn’t been clear with their expectations. Remember that this is an adjustment for your company as well as its employees. After all, no one expected that a day would come when a large percentage of America’s workforce was unable to attend work.
If you’re ever unsure of what your current project is, when it’s due, or any of the requirements, don’t be afraid to ask. It’s better to clarify now than two days before it’s due!
If you live with family, you don’t want to neglect them during these trying times. It can be easy to become consumed with work and stress, but neglecting your family life will only cause problems at work as well. Remember, this is a time of fear and uncertainty, and children especially need support during such times.
If you’re a parent, be sure you’re still making time for your kids. They’ll need your support and guidance, and you’ll feel better about the situation when you’re supporting them.
There’s a good chance you’ll be feeling incredibly anxious or even depressed during the quarantine. With millions out of work, there’s always that chance that your job could be the next one to get cut, and that’s a terrifying thought. Don’t neglect your mental health during these times. If you start to feel anxious, depressed, or any other serious mental health symptoms, you can still talk to someone.
There are hotlines available, online support forums, and even online counselors available to help you get your mental health back under control.
All work and no play can drive anyone mad. If you don’t already have hobbies, it’s the perfect time to adopt some new ones. They can help keep you sane during these difficult times, giving you something besides work to focus on. Productivity doesn’t just mean getting your work done; it can mean finishing your sketch, your painting, the musical piece you’ve been writing, or the novel you’ve had in your head for the last five years.