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Your Guide to Working Remotely for the First Time

wfh desk 

Whether you'll be working from home indefinitely or only until the pandemic ends, this guide will help you to prepare your home and other household members for your transition to working remotely. Working from home can certainly boost productivity and creativity, but it does take some time to get into the swing of things - especially when you're feeling unfocused and distracted by your family or roommates, social media accounts, or the news. To learn what you need to know about working remotely for the first time, read on! 

Make Room for Your Home Workspace

If you're only going to be working from home for the next month or so, the idea of working from your couch or kitchen table may seem fine at first, but you'll soon find yourself feeling sluggish, unmotivated, and in pain from being hunched over your laptop all day. If possible, it's best to create an ergonomic office space in a spare bedroom, unused corner, or even a basement, as this will help you to separate your work from your household members and the rest of your home.

  • Create a private workspace that allows you to disconnect from your family or other household members and focus on your work during the day. If you'll be working from home for the long term, it may be helpful to hire an interior designer as you create your new workspace.
  • Organize your desk for productivity and ergonomics. In a seated position, your feet should rest flat on the floor.
  • Fill your workspace with air-purifying plants. Some of the best plants for home offices include the Sansevieria, African violet, English ivy, and Aloe barbadensis.

Stay Focused and Reduce Distractions

Even if you live on the quietest street with no other household members, you're bound to face some sort of distraction while working from home. When your boss can't see what you're doing during the work day, it's easy to become distracted by technology, text messages, daily chores, or your other household members.

  • Come up with a plan that allows you to focus on your work with your kids at home all day long. For many, this means having a private space to work in, setting office hours, and creating a schedule that keeps your kids busy and entertained during the work day.
  • Block your social media and news notifications during the work day. You can stay up-to-date on the latest technology, entertainment, or coronavirus-related news, but it's important to limit yourself so that you're only checking these notifications at certain times throughout the day.
  • Improve your focus by downloading the Brain.fm app to your smartphone. The app has been scientifically proven to boost focus in just 15 minutes.
  • Make daily to-do lists to stay focused, organized, and on track. Some of the best task management apps include Trello, Centrallo, and Easynote.

Create Your Optimal Work-from-Home Schedule

Even if you're used to working in a relaxed office environment, schedules are vital while working from home. A good schedule will help to improve your focus, boost your productivity, and keep you on track to getting your work done each week. Here's how to do it!

  • Develop a work-from-home schedule that works for you. As you transition into working remotely, take note of the times when you're feeling most productive - as this will help you to create a schedule that works best for you.
  • Share your schedule with other household members. You could post your schedule on your closed office door, or you might use a mobile app like the WFH Scheduler.
  • Schedule some time for physical activity each day. Whether you schedule a time for stretching at your desk or running on the treadmill, breaking up your day with some movement will help to keep you productive and comfortable.

Working from home takes some getting used to, especially when you've never done it before and don't have a private home office to spend the work day in. However, these tips and resources will help you to adjust to working from home, and keep you as productive, focused, and comfortable as possible all week long.

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Published Thursday, May 07, 2020 7:56 AM by David Marshall
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