How are you feeling? Life for Americans (and the world) has changed so much over the last few days due to Coronavirus (Covid-19), but I’m doing my best to stay positive!
I hope by now you are doing your best to stay home, self-quarantine and flatten the curve. And if you’re reading this post, you’re probably working from home for the foreseeable future. I polled my Instagram followers and 78% of them said they would be working from home for at least the next week!
I’ve been working remotely for the last 1.5 years, so I’d say I’m a certified WFH pro! It sounds really fun and easy to work from home, but there’s more to it than just posting up on your couch with your laptop and watching your favorite TV shows all day.
Today, I wanted to share my best working from home tips with you to help you maximize your productivity and stay sane.
10 Working From Home Tips To Maximize Your Productivity & Stay Sane
1. Stick to your morning routine as much as possible
Working from home doesn’t mean you roll out of bed 5 minutes before your first meeting 😬Give yourself enough time to wake up, do your usual morning routine and then ease into your daily tasks. Brush your teeth, put on some makeup (or not), make your morning coffee, do your thing. You don’t have to commute, so you can still sleep in more than usual…just be smart!
2. Don’t work in the clothes you slept in
I have one major rule when working from home: I’m not allowed to start working or open my laptop until I change out of the pajamas I slept in the night before. It’s REALLY easy and tempting to just roll out of bed and start working (see above), but don’t do it.
You can even change into another pair of pajamas, but girl….put on some clean clothes.
3. Open all of the curtains & shades to let in light
Firstly, make your work station in a room that has windows and natural light. You do not want to be working in a dark room all day- I find that it really dampens my mood and makes me feel lethargic.
Before you sit down to start working, open up all of the curtains and shades in your home. You’ll want to sit facing a window if the glare bothers you, but having a well-lit space will make you much happier and much more productive!
4. Pick a clean and organized work station
There’s nothing more distracting than a messy house. Not only will working in a messy space make you want to do chores all day, but it’ll also potentially drive you crazy. I’m not a clean freak, but I am very organized, so messes stress me out!
You don’t need to hire a maid, but do your best to keep things tidy. It will minimize distractions and maximize productivity. For some reason lighting candles makes me feel like I’m in a clean oasis, so if you have candles, I highly recommend lighting them while you work!
Bonus- MAKE YOUR BED! I recommend doing this even if you don’t work from home, but especially if you’re working from home. It will be an instant confidence boost for you first thing in the morning and will make your space feel so much more put together.
5. Avoid sitting on the couch all day
It’s realllly tempting to plop down on the couch with your laptop and get to work, but I don’t recommend it. If you have a chair and table setting (dining room table, bar and stool, etc), sit there to begin your day instead!
Once you feel like you’re in a productive groove, then feel free to alternate between there and the couch. If you start your work day on the couch…you won’t want to leave lol.
6. Stand up or walk while taking your calls
Whenever you have calls, it’s the perfect opportunity to take a break from sitting and get to moving. When you stand, you’ll instantly have more energy and you’ll feel more confident and creative.
If it’s not a video chat, I recommend walking around (your place or outside depending on the type of call)! It’s such a refreshing break from being sedentary and will make you feel lively. I have this portable standing desk and it is EPIC.
7. Go outside at least once a day
In the past, I’ve been guilty of not leaving the house for sometimes days at a time. When I first started working from home I definitely struggled with a bit of depression. Staying cooped up all day with no human interaction can do that to a person, even an introvert like me.
Stepping outside at least once a day is a great way to get your endorphins flowing and to make sure you’re getting some vitamin d from the sun. Adding this into my daily routine may have been the most helpful thing I did for my overall mood, physical health, and productivity.
Try to go outside while the sun is still out! If it helps, schedule a recurring calendar event to block out time for this every day.
8. Resist leaving the TV on all-day
I of all people know how amazing a long day of binge-watching your favorite show on the couch can be. And while that is one of my favorite past times, it’s definitely not the way to have a productive work day.
I treat myself to one show per day, which is The View. It’s an hour-long, and I don’t have to pay 100% attention to it to get my fix. Other than that, I really try to limit my TV-watching because it can be super distracting! If you must have the TV on, pick something neutral and mindless (not like the ones on this list of 35+ shows to stream).
Instead, I recommend putting on an upbeat/inspiring playlist or a podcast. I love this playlist on Spotify!
9. Eat & take regular breaks
Just like at the office, make sure you eat meals and snacks and take little breaks throughout the day. I practice intermittent fasting and almost never eat before noon, but I always make myself lunch and have healthy snacks on hand to munch on.
If you tend to work through lunch or forget to take breaks, try scheduling 15-minute blocks throughout your day to ensure you’re incorporating this into your day. And don’t forget to stay hydrated!
10. Set boundaries
Are your work hours normally 9am to 5pm? Then those are your hours now, too. Just because you’re working at home doesn’t mean you should be fielding phone calls and emails early in the morning and late at night.
Set boundaries with your coworkers and supervisors and make sure to set time for yourself and your family (to workout, cook dinner, put your kids to bed, etc.). Once the magic hour rolls around, shut your laptop, turn off your work phone and try to mentally check out of work until the next morning!
I hope these tips have been helpful for you! I’m thinking about sharing more content around working from home in the coming weeks since so many people are new to it!
What else would you want to see? Favorite WFH work station supplies? Best background shows to put on while WHF? Let me know in the comments!
Stay safe, stay healthy, stay informed my friends. Thanks so much for reading and sharing!
Desk photos by Arnel Hasanovic on Unsplash