No matter where you live, chances are that you are currently affected by the effects of the COVID-19 virus, or Corona for short. In many countries there’ve been established exit restrictions or even curfews which has direct effects on your everyday life. Because of that, as far as possible a lot of people (including myself) work in homeoffice. However, homeoffice can be quite different from what you are used to. If you want to know how to be as efficient as possible while working from home you should definitely read on!
Busy? Then I’ve summarized the most important information of this blogpost for you.
Set up your workspace
I cannot stop mentioning how important it is, to set up a dedicated workspace (you can read about that in my blogpost: A desk for more productivity)! Starting with a clean workspace in the morning, where everything you need for your work is already available, is extremely important for your efficiency. While many of us already have such a workspace in the office, you should also consider setting one up at home.
At its simplest it may be sufficient to set up the computer on the dining table, and prepare your telephone and some paper as well as a pen. In any case, make sure that you have everything you need for your daily work at hand. Ideally, you have a place in your apartment where you can leave your workspace without having to set it up and take it down every day.
Stick to your working hours
WSince I had never worked from home before, this was also new territory for me. Right from the start, I was faced with the first challenge: Working hours. You start in the morning and stop working at your usual time. But what is often not considered: You hardly take any breaks!
For example, my lunch break is not part of my working hours and I simply don’t take any (or almost no) breaks when working from home. I just continue working in front of my computer almost the entire time. The temptation to continue working beyond working hours can also be great. The boundaries between professional and private life are blurring and it is important to draw a clear line.
Because of that I have started to incorporate my workouts into my “lunch break” or I just complete chores at home. This way I can clear my head from work and at the same time finish something that I would have to do anyway! Furthermore, I put my company cell phone in a desk drawer to avoid checking my emails in the evening.
This point differs from office to office, but I often communicate with colleagues in my everyday work to do my job. One of the biggest challenges about homeoffice is that this communication is lost, or at least not as easy as it used to be. We have already established a solution for communicating within our company, but otherwise you should consider (“privately”) options such as Skype or Discord.
If in doubt, you can simply use a Whatsapp voice call or call a colleague directly to discuss a topic. Personally, I prefer communication solutions in which several people can take part in a conversation. In my opinion, this is the most natural way for team-internal communication.
Furthermore, communication is important for be personally as well. Since social contacts should be avoided at the moment, it is important for me to use various communication solutions and the possibility for video chats as well in order to frequently exchange ideas or simply chat with my friends and colleagues.
One thing that I only became aware of while working from home is the lack of movement when I am not physically going to the office. Usually, even on days when I don’t do any sport, I walk almost 10,000 steps just by commuting and during my lunch break. These steps suddenly disappeared and I only took a few hundred steps a day.
I quickly realized that I was missing something and became very restless after a few days. In order to still be able to move my legs, I just did the following: My alarm goes off at the same time as always and I use the time before I start work for a walk (so to speak, for “commuting”). At this time (05:50-06:00) the streets are still pretty empty and I enjoy 30-40 minute of walking outside.
Perhaps you are like me and working from home you suddenly realize how much coffee you actually drink. If that’s the case, I have only one piece of advice for you: Secure your supply with coffee! And if you are one of the poor souls that does not have any means of enjoying coffee at home, then you just need to stick to the anticipation for the next coffee, which you can hopefully enjoy very soon😉.
Stay healthy and see you soon!