As “The Great Toilet Roll Shortage of 2020” continues, most of us will now be working from home. At first this seems like a dream. However, without some structure in place, the novelty of multitasking “work” and Netflix whilst sitting in your pants can quickly wear off.
I’ve worked from home (home changed countries every couple of months!) for over two years now and I thought I’d share a few of the things I find help me to be reasonably productive.
1. Wake Up (and make your bed!)
Try to get up at the same time you would if you were going to the office. Okay, maybe a little bit later! An extra 20 mins in bed isn’t going to hurt. Just make sure it’s the same time every morning. Then, make your bed. Sounds a bit of a weird thing to say but trust me. I never used to do this, I now do it every morning. It’s task number one of the day, nail that first task and move onto the next one.
2. Shower And Change Into “Work” Clothes
Cleanliness and hygiene aside, everyone feels better after a shower right? It’s the perfect pre-coffee wake up and a great place to think. All my best ideas happen while I’m standing under the shower. I need a shower proof whiteboard. Now that would be a great invention.
For the first few days enjoy the novelty of working in your pyjamas and after that, fix up, look sharp! This doesn’t need to be a three piece suit. I go for shorts and a t-shirt, the personal trainer’s uniform. You’ll be surprised at how much more focussed and work ready you feel just by having a shower and putting on some clothes!
3. Create Your Workspace
Slouching half on, half off the sofa with your laptop balanced on your knees is less than ideal. I guarantee after a few hours of this you’ll be stiff and aching. And when you do finally summon the courage to get up your legs will have gone numb. We can’t have this!
You need to create your own little office space. If possible, set up a permanent work area in your home. You don’t need to recreate Alan Sugar’s board room but you do need an area that’s just for working. I'm lucky enough to have a stand up desk riser thing that allows me to get the height of my screen just right and I can sit or stand to work. A stack of books will work really well as a laptop stand and together with a separate mouse and keyboard make things much more comfortable. Get a plant and give him/her a name. My plant is called Percy. Percy The Plant.
In part 2 I will be sharing my tips for staying fit, active and healthy at home.
Stay safe, stay strong