Now that we are all mostly under quarantine it’s become apparent that many of us need to learn a new skill: working from home. Some people have been doing it for years now, and they will openly tell you that there are a unique set of challenges and benefits associated from a mostly work from home schedule.
Personally I’ve been working from home for the last 12 years. It comes with ups and downs – staying on task, procrastinating, managing my time. It is hard to stay motivated sometimes, and therefore I have a set of habits that can help me when it comes to that inevitable slump.
If you are working from home here are some tips to help you keep your concentration:
Get dressed. Lounging around in your pajamas while you work might seem fun, but there is a huge mental benefit to getting dressed as if you were going to the office. I don’t mean you have to put on a suit, but dress as if it’s casual Friday. Put on your jeans, put on a nice shirt, brush your teeth and wash your face. These simple things will put in in the mindset to get stuff done. Pajamas are for your days off, not for your new at home workdays.
Create an office “space”. If you can dedicate a spare room to be an office, this would be ideal of course. If you can’t do this, then dedicate a zone for your office, even if you have to pick it up and move it when you’re done. Having consistency can sometimes help.
Break it up – other times moving around can help your concentration, especially if you are hitting mental blocks when writing. Pre-Covid 19 I would go to coffee shops to break things up.
Ensure your computer is in good working order. Having a slow or glitchy computer can be a huge burden. Using a software tool like Reimage Repair can help quite a bit with getting your computer working properly so that you can concentrate.
Get up and walk – every hour get up and walk around for a bit to get your blood moving. Even better, get a sit stand desk that will allow you to stand for periods of time so that you can break up your sitting time. You don’t have to stand all day but doing it throughout the day can really help.
Ensure you are ergonomically set up – this will ease any repetitive strain injuries as well as enable you to work longer without pain. Let me tell you, working when your body is hurting is a real problem for some people. Research ergonomics and ensure that your keyboard, monitor, and chair are set up in the proper heights.
After you work ensure that you have a good stretching routine to follow and ensure that you can easily and quickly get to your mat to stretch out your hamstrings and other muscles so that you maintain good body health hygiene. Stretching can go a long way towards improved mental health as well!