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5 Tips To Help You Work From Home

If your company is considering making WFH a long-term policy, these tips will help you stay productive and prevent burn-out.

COVID-19 has brought a major portion of the workforce to work from home, and while this has been going on for a while, some companies are considering making this a long-term policy. While there are perks to remote working, some people are experiencing symptoms of burn-out, blurred boundaries between personal time and work, fatigue, and a lack of productivity—all of which are completely normal, seeing that working from home comes hand-in-hand with myriad other responsibilities. There are some tips to boost your productivity and help you take care of your own health in the process, and we’ve rounded up some ways for you to do so.

Create a dedicated workspace
Carving out a workspace that’s not in your room will not only help you focus, but it’ll also help you unwind when you’re done for the day. Firstly, you’ll be able to avoid distractions that you may have in your room, and secondly, your room will still serve as a place of rest—your mind won’t associate it with work, so you’ll be able to separate those two parts of your life, both physically and mentally. This dedicated space should be equipped with all the essentials you may need to do your job.

Establish a routine
There’s a certain comfort that comes from routine, and for many people, working from home may break that. Along with that comfort, there’s also a sense of accountability when you have to report to an office by a certain time. Try and stick to the schedule you used to operate on, but take other factors into account. For example, you may have children at home or caretaking duties that have come up—try and account for this in your routine as much as possible, and let your colleagues know in advance that you’ll be unavailable during that time. It’s likely that you’ll find the line between work time and personal time becoming blurred, but it’s important to have an endtime as well to avoid burn-out. Convey this routine to those in your household as well so that everyone can respect your time. Sticking to your routine could also include wearing your work clothes in the morning, as the simple act of dressing can send a signal to your brain that it’s time to work, especially since we tend to attribute meanings to outfits.

Take regular breaks
As mentioned before, it’s common for people to keep working since there’s no structure or feeling of an endtime. Schedule breaks like you would if you were in the office—coffee breaks or lunch breaks—and use that time to move away from your workspace. Short breaks at regular intervals can boost your energy and help you remain focused. Another benefit of these breaks is that they can keep away any physical ailments like joint aches, which may occur when one sits for too long continuously. So, set timers if you have to and use that time to go for a short walk or stretch. If you can, try and take these breaks outside where you can get some fresh air and sunlight—you’ll come back physically and mentally recharged.

Stay connected
Isolation takes a toll—that’s an undisputed fact. Utilise all the means available to you to remain in touch with those close to you, as it will help improve your mental health and theirs as well. Take time out to check in on friends and family members, and even fellow colleagues, as regular human interaction can enhance one’s productivity.

Stay motivated and productive
There are various tools at your disposal that can help keep you productive, thereby keeping you motivated. Use apps that help you work and communicate efficiently with your team members; there are even virtual whiteboards available online that can be used for group brainstorming sessions. These apps and tools help remove the barriers that remote working can put in place. Keeping a to-do list and checking off items can also trigger a sense of accomplishment and, of course, help you stay on track. If you’re having trouble sticking to the schedule you’ve set for yourself, there are various productivity techniques that may help: the Pomodoro method divides your working time into sections of around 25 minutes followed by a break of five minutes. While a simple to-do list may help some, for others, adding time blocks to those items is more helpful. Allotting a set duration to each task allows you to regain control of your own time, and helps you avoid drifting through the day from task to task. Finally, sometimes in order to give the impression of being productive, we focus on immediate tasks that can be done quickly and not the more important ones. Instead, prioritise your work according to the level of importance and value it will bring.

At Seva At Home, we produce a wealth of free health information to help elders live healthier, happier lives. This has been produced by independent research carried out by the Seva At Home team. This information is not a replacement for medical advice. Please consult your physician for relevant medical diagnosis and advice.

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