As someone who works from home and homeschools my kids regularly, this quarantine hasn’t changed much for my family and I other than us wanting to leave the house for an errand or a fun family outing. 🙂
I know that’s not the case for a lot of you, though, and I know you’re probably feeling a little stir crazy by now. Maybe it’s even hard to focus on work.
In our recent podcast, one of our strategists, Lennon, and I hung out to talk about how we stay productive and creative working from home. Here are some things we talked about.
Give it time. If you’re used to work from outside of your home and it’s your first time working from home, adjusting to a new rhythm doesn’t happen overnight. Also, the world is collectively going through a traumatic event with the majority of people being forced to work from home – this isn’t a choice. There is grief and anxiety involved. Let yourself feel what you need to feel and experiment with your new routine as long as it takes to feel more comfortable.
Designate a space in your home just for work. This may not be possible for everyone – but even if you can’t separate another room for work, designate a corner or area that is for your work. It’s hard to mentally “shut off” work when you’re home all day. You don’t get to walk in the door and unwind when you are moving from your dining room table to your couch. It helps to mentally have an area that’s just for work so you can still have some semblance of working being done for the day.
Create a routine that sets you up for the work day. One of the nice things about working a 9 to 5 is getting up at the same time everyday and having a list of expectations that need to be met every single day. It’s hard for some people to have freedom and less accountability that comes with working from home. Some people thrive on more structure, but for now, if you want to stay productive – you’ve got to create your own. Get up, brush your teeth, put real pants on, and go to your designated workspace. It all helps! :-)
Remove distractions. When you’re by yourself, it’s easy to end up watching 30 minutes of Tik Tok. We’re all human. The best thing to do during working hours is to put your phone in another room or reward yourself with distractions when you get things done! Set a timer, go on a walk or play some Clash of Clans for a few minutes, and then get back to it. Schedule that into your routine if you need to! Just make sure work time is work time so you’re not stressed out during your breaks or you’re not working the graveyard shift.
Sacrifice professionalism for realness. When it comes to YouTube, maybe your content is based on travel, everyone being home makes it difficult to film, etc. and you feel like you can’t film. I love what Jimmy Fallon has done with his home show being on YouTube. It isn’t highly produced (it’s shot on an iPhone) and he’s getting millions of views – because everyone is looking for entertainment and can relate to feeling stuck at home. Use that if you can and be creative with your videos during this time.
Communicate. If you’re living with a spouse, kids, family, or roommates right now, it’s important to communicate what each person needs and/or what they’re feeling. If you have a big project or something you need to work on, see if there’s a way you can coordinate schedules so you can have some uninterrupted time to work on things. Don’t assume other people know how you’re feeling or how you work best. Take it day by day if you need to – but be sure to communicate.
Plan out your week on Sunday night. This may vary depending on your personality, but it may help some of you to look at the week ahead on a Sunday night to see what’s coming up – so you’re in the know and don’t forget anything. Some people on my team will also write down the top things they want to get accomplished that week. That helps them work on what’s really important and not just the busywork. I’m more of a show up and go kind of guy – but I also have a personal assistant to keep my calendar organized – so it’s whatever works for you!
What about you? What are some things that have helped you work from home well? We’d love to hear your tips!
Thanks for reading!
Keep changing lives,