The New Normal: #WorkFromHome

Angie Chia-Baxter • May 8, 2020

Photo by Dillon Shook on Unsplash

Thanks to COVID-19, working from home has become the new normal. For many, it’s their first time doing it. Most businesses had to close their offices and where possible, provide options to work remotely. Some will find the transition easy but there will be many who will have a hard time transitioning to the new “work from home normal”.

There are some great perks working from home, such as creating a routine that works best for you, more time to do things you enjoy, and more time to spend with family. However, nothing ever is as simple as it seems. Working from home can also be a challenge.

As someone that has never worked from home before, I fall under the category of people who are trying to adjust to the new normal. There are endless tips and tricks that can help with this transition. I’ve tried many things; some were successful and some not so much… but that doesn’t mean you won’t find your rhythm! You just have to find what works for you!

Pretend like you are going into the office

When you are working from home, do your normal routine as if you were going into the office: have an alarm set, take a shower, get dressed, make your coffee. Don’t let staying at home affect your normal workday routine. Personally, this helped me get ready for my day. As much as I would love to stay in my pajamas all day, getting ready for work in the mornings keeps me productive and gets me prepared for the workday ahead of me.

Designated workspace

As tempting as it is to work from your bed or your couch, it is important to have a set place to work. It’s a good way to separate your work and personal life. If you do work in your bed or a place you find relaxing, that space may become more stressful and more about work, losing its relaxing quality.

I also find it helpful to eat lunch away from my workspace. Getting up to make lunch gives a brief time away from work. Nobody wants bread crumbs on their keyboard!

Take breaks when needed

So many of us often forget to take a break. We often end up committing and work ourselves too much, which ultimately affects our productivity. It’s important to give yourself a break from work. Go for a walk, make yourself a cup of tea, anything that allows you to step away for a breather. Do allow yourself those little breaks as you see fit, sometimes you just need a few minutes to breathe. Personally, I find that I lose track of time so easily and forget to give myself a small 5-minute break.

Stay connected with your team

It’s easy to focus solely on your work and become disconnected from your team. Make sure to communicate with your teammates regularly. Not only is it helpful to prevent feeling alone, but it also gives your teammates an opportunity to know how you are and what you’re working on. Having a virtual meeting using a video conferencing tool such as Zoom can help everyone keep up to date with each other and to allow for some social interaction.

Maintain regular hours

Maintaining regular hours will keep you balanced between your work and personal life. I find it’s easier to stick to a schedule that you know and that the rest of your team follows. You know you can get a hold of them because they too are working the regular schedule.

These are some of the tricks that are helpful with the transition from office to home. There are a ton of other tips and tricks out there! If there are some that have helped you, please share it with us! 😃

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