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7 Tips for Working from Home While Keeping Your Sanity
In times like this, keeping your sanity can be difficult. If you’re shacked up at home, working alone, or trying to deal with the kids while still getting your work done, this can make staying sane even more challenging. Fortunately, there are some tried and tested methods you can use to make working from home much easier and more enjoyable.
Designate a specific location in your home to work from
The first tip to make your work-from-home life easier, is to designate a specific location in your home as your dedicated working space and try to keep it as separate from your living space as possible. If you work from your desk that’s located right next to your bed, it can be tempting to take one too many naps (I can confirm as a type this).
If you have a designated study room to work from great, if not, even a simple dining table can do the trick.
Mirror your office set up
Another useful trick is to configure your home workspace to mimic your office workspace as much as possible. If for example, you normally work with two monitor screens, set up two monitor screens in your home workspace. If you normally use an external USB hub, or have a particular headset you use, make sure these are connected the same way they would be if you were in the office. This will not only ensure that your productivity doesn’t suffer, but also put you in the right mindset for working.
Maintain a routine
There are a couple of different schools of thought on this one. Some people will suggest that when working from home you should try and maintain your normal routine as if you were still coming into the office. Some people will say this is unrealistic. I would argue that it depends on the individual. If you for example have kids at home, it is unrealistic that you’re going to manage the same schedule that you would coming into the office. If you live alone however, your routine might not need to change much.
However, the key here is to work out a routine and stick to it, even if it differs from your normal office routine. Have set times for lunch or morning tea and try and prep your snacks and meals as much as you can. This will help deal with the temptation of getting up to go grab something from the fridge every couple of hours.
Go for a walk
This is one that helps me tremendously. Although social distancing and isolation are extremely important right now in flatting the curve of COVID-19, you still need to place value on your own mental health. Factoring into your routine a daily 10-20min walk can help enormously with this.
Going outside and getting some fresh air will help you keep your sanity, especially if you’re typing this from a one-bedroom unit like I am. Just make sure you maintain social distancing practices on your walk, as recommended by the Australian Government.
Ensure your have the right infrastructure in place
This is a no-brainer but to work from home with success the first step is to ensure your business has the correct infrastructure in place. You need to be able to quickly make calls, chat with co-workers, set up meetings and collaborate on documents. There are many popular tools that can help with this such as Zoom, Box, DropBox and Microsoft Teams.
At Miktysh, Microsoft Teams is our tool of choice for facilitating remote working. Teams is a central collaborative hub that brings together your Office 365 apps such as Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Outlook and Planner, to make working from anywhere easy.
You can easily set and assign tasks, send meeting invitations, screen share, co-author documents and securely share information. I previously put together a handy 30min webinar that demonstrates how you can use Teams for remote working, which you can find here.
Dress for the workplace
This is something you hear a lot but is still often neglected. And no, it doesn’t mean throwing a business shirt over your pajamas for a video call only to take it off immediately afterwards (you know who you are).
Getting dressed for work will put you in the mindset for working, whereas if your dress for sleep you’ll be in the mindset for sleeping.
For some of us it can be very lonely working from home, especially if you’re used to hearing other people’s voices. Playing background music can alleviate some of that loneliness. Just make sure it isn’t too loud to the point of being distracting.
And don’t forget to pause or mute your music if you’re taking a call!
Set yourself up for remote working success
Well I hope some of those tips helped. Working from home when you’re not used to it can be challenging at first, but it will get easier.
The first step, as I mentioned is to ensure you have the right infrastructure in place to facilitate remote working. If your business needs help in setting this up, whether it be deploying Office 365 and Microsoft Teams; configuring your systems and structuring your information for remote working; or undergoing training so users know how to get the most out of their tools, our consultants can help. Simply let us know your situation and we’ll be in touch to help talk you through what you need to do to set yourself up for remote working success.
Luke is an experienced Marketing Manager and host of the Information Transformation Podcast. He has a keen interest in developing engaging content to inform people about the changing landscape of the information management industry.
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