10 productivity tips for WFH during the outbreak

10 Productivity Tips For Working from home

Working from home (WFH) has become the new norm! Today, I am going to share with you 10 productivity tips for working from home to stay organized and make your experience efficient and productive, during this COVID-19 outbreak.

It almost feels surreal, how much the world has changed in just a few short weeks. It is perfectly understandable, with so much uncertainty around us, if we are unsure about how to react or what to do. We certainly did not come with a manual to deal with a global crisis of this level happening currently.

“Work from Home” a boon during crisis management

We each are doing our best to learn along, as we deal with the crisis management each day. The ability to be able to work from home during such crisis certainly saves the day in most of our cases. The choice of being able to work remotely, gives us the flexibility to get things done.

Given the social distancing that is being asked of people in areas affected with Corona virus and the “Stay at home and Stay safe” restrictions are in place, some of us might only have a choice to telecommute in work.

If you are someone like me who is not used to working from home , this can be an unsettling feeling to start with.You are not used to working from a space where you come to relax & unwind at the end of the day until now.This can feel like unfamiliar territory.

“Work from Home” Advantages

Today, I am going to share with you some helpful productivity tips for working from home to make your experience efficient and productive. If you follow along my post, you will soon learn that working from home has its advantages.

You will be able to apply these productivity tips for working from home to any such future emergency situations where you are stuck at home. Perhaps during say a snowstorm, a hurricane or a family member who is sick that you need to take care of .

Imagine how much time you can save & the stress involved in driving through rush hour traffic or a snow storm? The freedom to work “location independent”, the choice to dress up or dress down, the productivity boost all are perks of working from home.

Remember, the number of hours you put in is still the same, it is just the space you are working in that has changed.If you stick to a plan , stay organized and disciplined in your approach to working from home, it will work like a charm, let me show you how…..

10 Productivity Tips for Working From Home during this outbreak

Here is a list of 10 productivity tips for working from home during this outbreak

Setting clear work hours for yourself

Setting clear work hours for yourself

Scheduling your work day into clear “time blocks” helps greatly. A start time, work time, lunch hour and end time for the work day creates a routine.This will help us get into the “work zone” mode, instead of aimlessly being distracted with a million other things to get done at home during that time.

Creating a dedicated “home office” area

Create a dedicated home office space

The “home office” could be any area in your home, a basement, a spare bedroom or even a corner of your dining room.To mark off the territory you can even use a curtain or a privacy screen. The idea is to stay organized and have a mindset of being in a “work zone”. Did you know that you can write off your taxes if you have a separate office space in your home ?

Perhaps a vision board to inspire you? A live money plant on your desk for a visual treat to take your mind off all the technological stuff around you. Some LED lamps to brighten your work space? Essential office supplies like a pen holder, some sticky notes etc in a familiar desk setup you are used to. All of these could create a sense of comfort and familiarity in your work space.

It is wise to invest in some useful gear that could come in real handy, even if your “work from home” arrangement is temporary. These would assure your comfort and productivity at all times. Listed below are a few suggestions, that seems to work well for me. Give it a try!

  • A great webcam for video calling and conferencing. This webcam is a great choice since it frames you in the best light ,whether you are videoconferencing for work or with friends and family.
  • Noise -cancelling headphones to mute all external noises be it outside traffic or your pet barking during conference calls. These headphones work perfect to block out everyday distractions.What’s more, you can use it while flying too to get a good night’s sleep on overnight flights!
  • A Laptop stand, ergonomically supportive to your back and shoulders when you work long hours.
  • A WiFi hotspot to keep you connected, if your home internet suddenly dies on you.Some people prefer to use their phone as hotspot, not only does it drain your phone battery, it also can hog your data limits on the phone, so be warned!
  • An Ergonomic Office chair to support your back and shoulders during long work hours.
  • An Office Desk when working from a designated office space at home.Not only does it help you stay organized, you will more productive & efficient with your work, when not having to slouch on the couch with your laptop.

Hire help or designate chores around the house

Hire help around home

Initially when you start it might seem expensive to hire domestic help.Yet, in the long run you will end up being much more productive and increase your earning potential, when you don’t feel stretched too thin doing multiple chores around the house while working from home.

Hiring a nanny if your kids are small, some domestic help for around the home, an accountant to help with your taxes etc all unburden you from too much work load, helping you be efficient in what you are good at and succeed in your career.

Create Routines

Create routines

When we create routines be it in the beginning of a work day or the end of a work day, we overcome the impulse to slack off.

A quick morning walk with your pet, followed by a shower, “dressing up” for the job, a cup of coffee and going through the day’s schedule first thing in the morning will set the tone for the work day routine.

Similarly while wrapping up for the day, sticking to the time, closing down all work apps, organizing your work schedule for the next day will help one mentally close shop and ease into an evening of relaxation.

Both overworking and procrastination is possible if we don’t stick to a routine while working from home.It is also real easy to let work life bleed into your personal life when you work from home.It is important to set boundaries, for both halves of the equation.

Steer clear of distractions

Steer clear of distractions

Tempting as it is to work from home, it is important to remember to steer clear of distractions. Checking your social media on your devices, movies on Netflix, frequent snacking or stops at the refrigerator to name a few are some of the common distractors , when working from home.

Adhering to your work ethics is a must, if you plan to get work done. Distractions have no place during regular work schedule!

Take short yet frequent breaks

Take short yet frequent breaks

Just like in distraction, too much work and not taking a break in between would make us loose focus and tire easily. “Work at home” by sitting in the same spot and working continuously makes us dull and less productive.It is good advice to take short and regular breaks to break the monotony.

Perhaps a short mid-day walk with your pet around the block, stepping into your garden, listening to music all boost our spirit and help us come back refreshed to work efficiently. I am a big fan of the Pomodora technic, which works on a 25 minutes on, 5 minutes off routine for 4 continuous cycles.

Set healthy boundaries

Set healthy boundaries

It is important to let friends and family know what “working at home” means to you. This will set healthy boundaries and a clear message to let them know to respect your time .This will also teach them not to disturb you at work with phone calls or messaging during work hours.

It is important to set healthy boundaries around your expectations, so people understand you value your time and not take you for granted just b’coz you are “working from home”.

Take time to exercise regularly

Exercise regularly

It is important to keep both your mind and body in tone while working from home.It is easy to fall off the grid, either due to lack of motivation or due to isolated working conditions and sitting in the same spot.It becomes so important to get up and move to keep physically & mentally fit.

Simple walks with your pet, yoga and breathing exercises like pranayama, hitting the gym, dance lessons, all will help clear your mind and stay healthy and positive through out the day.

Schedule time to socialize with others

Socialize with others

We are human and connection is very important for our emotional well being. Set a time to socialize be it with good friends, family or co workers to avoid feeling lonely. Interacting with others boosts feelings of well-being and decreases feelings of depression.

Remember to have fun and enjoy your career

Live life and Celebrate every moment!

At the end of the day when all is said and done working from home has its advantages. You get to spend more time with your family, save more on commute and clothings ( not to mention the stress of handling both each morning)

If you plan it well, you might have the freedom to travel more ( if you are anyone like me, you have already dreamt about it!) .With less of outside stress to deal with, you can soon become a success in your career if you put your mind to it.

The Bottom Line

I hope today’s post, the 10 productivity tips for working from home, helps you in staying organized while “working from home” during this outbreak.

Which of these helpful tips would you apply now that you are more clear about the tips for “working from home”?

Are you going to create routines for the work day at home?

Do you plan on hiring help or designating chores around home, while you are at work?

Either way do let us know by leaving your comments below.We would also appreciate if you had any of your own tips to share with us here.

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