How to make working from home more enjoyablePersonal Updates 13 March 2020
Where working from home is a dream for some, it can be a nightmare for others. Unfortunately, it is not always in our control and sometimes we are ‘forced’ to work from home. If we like it or not. Like now in times of the coronavirus.
Not everyone is good at working from home
Let’s face it. Not everyone is good at working from home. For me it depends a lot on the day and on the situation and of course on the job you have. On some days, working from home can give me a lot of energy and I can get a lot of work done. But on some other days I feel tired and restless, especially on days where I have a lot of meetings.
In recent years, I have gained quite a bit of experience with working from home. As a result, I have found a number of ways in which working from home can be a lot more enjoyable for yourself. Every person and every situation is different, of course, but maybe that these tips and tricks will help you.
Shower, get dressed, have breakfast and… work from home
The biggest pitfall for me is to roll out of bed and then start working on the couch in my pyjamas. After an hour, you maybe decide to take a shower. And then you realise that you still need to have breakfast, so your focus is far from there. When I work at home, I set my alarm clock a bit later because I don’t need to travel to the office. But the rest of my morning routine is exactly the same. When I get out of bed, I jump in the shower, get dressed and make myself some breakfast. And instead of going to the office afterwards, I stay at home and start working. By keeping my morning ritual the same, I feel a lot more comfortable and less sluggish throughout the day.
Whether it is a day off, the weekend or a work day from home, it is a fact of life for me that I move less on these days. During a working day at the office, I take quite a few steps throughout the day. I take a walk with colleagues after lunch, on my way to and from work and I take every opportunity to take a scheduled meeting outside while walking. On a work day from home, I sometimes don’t even leave the house and my pedometer from my phone doesn’t get much use. That is why I often force myself to go outside. A walk after breakfast, a walk after lunch and a walk before or after dinner. That way, you get some exercise and walking does you good!
Enjoy your breaks
Whereas at work you might open your social media or have a cup of coffee with a colleague, when you work from home you can create completely different breaks. You can prepare a nice lunch for yourself. Do a yoga class in between. Or read a chapter from the book that has been lying untouched on your bedside table for far too long. What I often do myself, is that I set myself a number of work related goals and then I can and may enjoy that break, as a kind of reward. It may sound childish, but strangely enough, it does motivate me.
Make sure you have a nice workplace
It sounds very nice: working from the couch or from your bed. My experience is that it may be fun on the first day, but not on the next. For this reason, I have created a nice workspace for myself. Most of the times I use it to work from home, but sometimes I also work on my own projects in the evening. It’s a small investment when you buy a screen, keyboard and mouse. But in the end, it not only gives you more productivity, but also a better working posture.
Stay in touch with each other
What I find most difficult about working from home is that it is easy to become socially isolated. No more talking about the weather, what we’re having for dinner tonight, what we’re doing this weekend, etc. Therefore: stay in touch with each other! Share a photo of a freshly made cup of coffee in a chat group. Ask a colleague if he or she would like to call for ten minutes. Working from home can feel lonely, but it can also create a sense of togetherness when you’re all in the same boat. But, you may have to take the first step yourself.