One of the many sudden changes that the COVID-19 virus has brought on to the world is the sudden need for most employers to send their employees home to work. While this is a welcome change for some, others may be struggling with their productivity and efforts to find a new life balance may be challenging.
Working from home comes with its own set of benefits, distractions, and frustrations that are quite different from those you find in the regular workplace.
Can you really work at home and achieve your career goals? The answer is up to you!
These thoughtful questions and informative tips can guide you toward successfully working at home:
1. Where can you devote space in your home to your work? Although it doesn’t have to be a whole room, you’ll need a desk and a couple of drawers designated for your work.
• A small storage cabinet will also come in handy for supplies and work-related documents.
• Consider the spaces in your home that are currently not often used. Maybe a guest bedroom or den could double as your place to work if you make a few changes.
2. Do you possess a strong work ethic and personal responsibility? If you’re able to set a time to start working in your home office and follow through with it, then you’re one more step closer to being successful in working at home.
• When you work from home, no one is watching over you.
• You don’t have someone 10 feet from you whom you can consult with or ask a question.
• However, if you’re responsible and self-motivated, you can do it.
3. Are others in your home during the workday that might cause distractions? Talking with your loved ones about working from home is important to your success. Get a commitment from them to support you in your endeavor to help reduce interruptions while you’re working.
4. Can you screen out other distractions? Neighborhood kids playing outdoors, noisy cars passing by and telephones ringing could all serve to sabotage your work success. If you can close your door and ignore these events, success will come easier for you.
5. Can you stay focused and on task while working at home? Due to the remarkable technology we all have available to us, it’s easier to lose your concentration on work-related tasks.
• You can waste valuable work time through repeated checking of email, social networking sites, and text messages during the day. For better concentration and greater productivity, refrain from these activities while working (unless you need to check emails for your work).
6. Consider drawing up a structured schedule. Depending on the type of work you do, it’s helpful to have a schedule that reflects what you’re working on and how long you want to spend on each task.
7. In the event your work involves prolonged sitting, build time for daily scheduled exercise. A healthy body and mind are also important to success. It’s wise to get some physical activity each day.
• A 30-minute time slot before lunch, for example, is a great time to take a walk, do some calisthenics, or complete an exercise DVD.
• If you’re an early riser, consider getting your exercise out of the way first thing in the morning. You’ll begin your work-at-home day with enthusiasm and be truly ready to sit down and focus.
People just like you all over the world accomplish working at home successfully. With careful planning, personal responsibility, and the ability to screen out distractions, you’ll find working at home to be rewarding and liberating.