The pandemic has been around for a few months now but are you still struggling to figure out how to effectively work from home during the pandemic?
If your answer is “yes”, you are not alone. The concept of “working from home” or “remote work” is not one that many people are familiar or comfortable with. This is because they have never done it before and for so many years have been used to the “Corporate America” environment, where they go to an office everyday and then go home after their work day is over.
In fact, many people do not even have a home office set up because they spent so many hours at the office and they never thought that they would need an official work area from home.
Now that people are being forced to work home from the pandemic they have no choice but to figure out a solution to work effectively at home.
The issue is that their home environment is not currently set up for working from home.
They now have to deal with having their spouse at home who may also be “working remotely” during the pandemic. What’s even more distracting is that the children are also home and parents are also forced into homeschooling them.
5 Solutions to Work Effectively from Home
- Have a dedicated work area or room in your apartment or home where you can work from uninterrupted. Find a space in your home or apartment that is tucked away from foot traffic and the children. If you have a 2nd bedroom that you can turn into a home office, that would be the most ideal. If you don’t have a 2nd bedroom, you may opt for a well-lit space in your living room or even turn a formal dining room table into your work area.
- You must structure your day just as you did when you were at the office.
Working from home requires discipline. In order to have discipline you must plan your day out ahead of time you must have a game plan for what you’re going to do and at what time and stick to it.
Important tip: don’t forget to pencil in time for your breaks and for lunch otherwise, you’ll find yourself looking at your clock and it’s 3:30 PM and you haven’t had even lunch or breakfast for the day. Sound familiar?
Many people that I’ve interviewed or talk to you lately about the pandemic have all said that it’s all too easy for the workday to go into the night; what that means is that they find themselves working more hours than they did when they were actually working from an office. That may sound strange but it is a sad reality of the times that we’re in right now and if we don’t pay attention our health and personal relationships will suffer.
3. You must set boundaries at home
It’s all too easy when you’re working from home to have your husband or roommate pop in and say oh I have a question or where did you put the remote control, however; it is up to you to set strict boundaries during work hours that you will not be disturbed for anything that’s not related to to your work schedule. Make it clear that you should only be interrupted for true emergencies. Even though you may find it difficult to set boundaries with family members; it is essential during this time.
4. Don’t get in the habit of doing household chores during work hours
Even though it seems easy enough to throw the laundry in the washer and then put it in the dryer as you’re working…one chore leads to another…you get up to walk from your home office area to the washing machine and then you realize oh the floor looks dirty and before you know it you picked up the mop and you started to mop your floor. It’s very easy to get distracted by everything that you see in your house and that keeps you from being the most effective during business hours.
If you really want to get your chores done during the day then put your laundry in the washer before your workday or do on your lunch break or do it when you’re done with work or taking a work break.
If you get personal calls during the day from friends or family make sure you tell them that you will call them back after work hours or simply do not take the call and let them know that you are in the middle of a workday and you’ll call them back when you have time.
It is best if you can lay the ground rules initially instead of when your friends are calling you. Just let your friends know hey if you call me during the day I will probably not answer the phone because I’m trying to focus on work and if you need something important then you can send me a text message and I will reply when I’m able to. This concept works because you are being honest and upfront instead of simply ignoring their phone calls.
5. Create a peaceful workspace that you love being in
It is important to create a workspace that you feel peaceful and comfortable in and are able to work effectively.
Some things to consider are:
- Do you have good lighting in your workspace?
- Is your desk large enough to accommodate your work needs?
- Does your computer provide ample lighting for your zoom calls?
- Check your internet speed and connection to ensure high-quality Zoom/conference calls
- Make sure your home office area is tucked away where is away from the kids, the pets, and any other distractions?
- Add an artificial plant or a real plant to spruce up your home office.
- Invest in some office decor that makes your office come to life and gives it a little bit of zest and personality.
For more tips on business, getting through the pandemic, and productivity/tech tips, join my free Facebook Group and get free access to “The She Wears Stilettos Summit” (with over 15 sessions from powerhouse female leaders on entrepreneurship, business, marketing, and mindset.
Blazer: Badgley Mischka
Necklace: Kendra Scott
Hoop Earrings: Melinda Maria