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Top Tips for Staying Productive While Working from Home

Adapting to the remote work life may have been a bit more challenging than you imagined! Although there are many perks to being able to work from home during these times, there are also new challenges to be faced that you may not experience while working in an office. Seeing your personal space as your professional space during working hours can be difficult! While we all continue to perfect our work from home routines, we've solidified a few tips that can help you stay focused, organized and productive!

 

 

1. Create a Morning Routine

Wake up and pretend like you ARE going into the office! Although you may not be preparing to set out on your daily commute, having the mindset that you are "going to work" will mentally prepare you for the day. Make your coffee, change into fresh clothes, and complete your normal morning tasks. Having your body go through the motions of a normal work day will give you time to wake up and time to get into the right mindset! Although eliminating your commute adds more opportunities to hit snooze, try your hardest to use that time to prep for your day.

 

2. Designate a Work Space

This tip is super helpful for a few reasons. The first is that it helps you form a habit of seeing this space as your professional space, and not just part of your home. When you sit down to start work for the day, you should feel comfortable and be in a spot that you can stay in for the duration of your work day. This can be difficult if you're living in a small space, but an area as simple as your kitchen counter will keep you grounded and prohibit feeling "scattered." A clean work space is also important, as clutter can trigger feeling stressed! When the work day is done, you are free to regain this space as your living space once again, but try to stick to a certain spot each day!

 

3. Plan Your Day

As you sit down to work, make a list of your priorities and top tasks. With meetings going virtual, it's important to know what your day entails so you do not miss anything important. Plan out your day, set meeting reminders and look ahead. When you aren't reminded of meetings by seeing your co-workers head to the meeting room, time can slip away! It's also important to develop a process for scheduling virtual meetings with your team and to communicate your deadlines with each other. By planning out your day in a detailed manner, you can start your work day with top-of-mind tasks and anticipate upcoming projects.

 

4. Stick to Your Schedule

Maintaining your regular work hours is an important part of creating a work and personal life balance. Although your home now includes your work space, try to not let the work day hours invade your personal time. Every job is different, however try your best to just stick to your routine before the switch to remote work. This will help you eliminate unneeded stress and help you reflect on your accomplishments for the day. Having a defined end to your day is a great checkpoint to prioritize your tasks for the next work day, and put a cap on that day's work. It's important to keep your well-being a priority during these times, as it can be easy to let your work stretch beyond your hours when you don't need to physically leave your office!

 

5. Stay Connected and Socialize 

With in-person communication and socializing being cut out of your work hours, it's important to stay connected to your co-workers. Companies value the relationships within their teams, and removing in-office conversations can really impact relationship building. Using platforms such as Slack and other digital conversation sites is a great way to stay connected to your team. Remember, you don't need to always talk about work! Use these opportunities to see how your co-worker's weekend was, or see what they have planned for the upcoming week. Working from home can feel a bit isolating, so remembering to socialize is more important than ever. Our favorite way to wrap up a week and chat is to host a virtual happy hour!

 

6. Take Adequate Breaks

When you are in the comfort of your own home, it can be easy to see the hours fly by! When you get in the zone and check tasks off your list, it's important to remember to give yourself a break. When you're working in the office, you're often finding yourself taking small breaks by default, such as in between meetings or heading out to lunch. When you don't need to actually get up to do these tasks, it can be easy to skip over your well-deserved breaks! If needed, set a reminder on your calendar to get up and take a walk or sit in a different space for a few minutes to refresh.

 

7. Stay Positive! Celebrate Your Small Successes

When you are working from home, it can feel as though there's not much excitement around your projects. When you are in the office, it's fun to discuss your goals and compliment your team's completion of a project as you see each other. When we are in our homes and not socializing as much, it can feel as though these typically rewarding tasks don't seem as exciting! Remind yourself that you are succeeding in a new environment, and that your team sees your work just as much as they did before. This is another reminder to stay connected, and send your team members encouraging messages and support. As you wrap up for the day, look at what you accomplished and pat yourself on the back! Celebrate your wins, no matter how small, and remember that you are also adapting to a new work environment!

 

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