Although you may no longer be under strict, statewide stay-at-home orders, you might still be working from home, out of an abundance of caution. Or, maybe, you’ve decided to make working from home a more permanent situation – no matter what’s happening with coronavirus. Either way, if you’re currently working from home, you will want to establish a few ground rules, in order to keep your productivity up and your days structured. Here are a few rules you should always follow when working remotely.
Work at a designated space.
Many Americans use a desktop computer, laptop, tablet, smartphone, or combination of devices to get through their workday. Because most of these gadgets can be used anywhere, you might find yourself spending half of your day at a desk, and the rest of the day working from your couch, your bed, your outdoor chaise lounge...anywhere, really. Though some diversity in your working environment is good, it’s better for you to complete every task from one designated workspace. Pick a spot that’s away from most of the commotion in your apartment and do your best to work from only that space.
Maintain regular working hours.
While working from home, it can be tempting to break your regular working schedule. Maybe you’d like to sleep in one morning and compensate by working late that night. Perhaps, you’d like to make a good impression on your boss and knock out several to-do items over a weekend. But, you should approach any modifications to your regular working hours with caution. It’s important that you maintain a work-life balance, even when working remotely. Burnout is a real consequence of too much work or work conducted at irregular hours. Maintain your sanity and set boundaries between work and home by sticking to your normal, 9-to-5 schedule, no matter what.
Don’t forget to take breaks!
You wouldn’t spend an entire day at the office without taking a lunch break, so why should you glue yourself to your computer at home? Taking a few minutes to eat lunch, finish a short household chore, or simply spend time with your children or pets can keep your brain sharp and productivity up. Just be sure to keep track of how much time you’re away from your work – it’s easy to underestimate the amount of time one break will take! Try setting an alarm to remind you when it’s time to get back to work.
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