More people are working from home these days than ever before, and many will have the option to continue to do so even when the pandemic is over. There are perks, for sure, including no long commutes, spending less on gas and work clothes, and lunches out.
But working from home comes with challenges, chiefly from changes in routine, the absence of socialization and/or household noise and distractions. Psychologists suggest five ways to make the most of your transition and set boundaries between your work and home life,
- Have a Designated Space to Work – The kitchen table is not ideal and your bed should never be your desk. Whether it’s a whole room or a corner in your living room, a designated workspace can help get your head in gear before you even get seated.
- Monitor Your Screen Time – Zoom fatigue is real, optometrists say, and too much screen time strains your eyes. In addition, the blue light emanating from digital screens can wreak havoc on your eyes and skin. Dermatologists advise putting on sunscreen before you start your day at the computer.
- Plan Your Workday – While the average workday runs from 8-10 hours, studies show that most people are at their most productive for 5-6 hours a day. To stay at your most productive, organize your day by taking occasional breaks from the computer to do tasks that require less brain power, such as making phone calls, organizing paperwork or just relaxing with a snack.
- Change Up Your Routine – Following the same routine every day becomes boring and dulls your energy. Rearrange the office furniture to change the view from your workspace. Fix yourself a hearty breakfast now and then instead of rolling out of bed and going straight to work. Make that trip to the coffee shop and bring back your favorite cup of joe. Take a longer afternoon break and read or listen to music.
- Separate Work and Home Life – Maintaining a healthy work-life balance is important. Clock out on time and start enjoying your after-hours time with family or friends. Resist the temptation to check your work email at night or finish that report. Tomorrow will be here soon enough.