Who would have thought almost a year ago that the way we work would change so dramatically?  For those lucky enough to be able to perform their job from home, cheers echoed around the country - no more getting up an hour earlier to make the commute to the workplace, no more scraping those car windscreens (in the harsher weather), no more rushing the kids to school.  Added to this, people were saving an absolute fortune on lunch/travelling expenses!  Could it get much better than this…?

 … Or working from home as good as it’s cracked up to be?

Of course, home carries its own distractions, with many funny stories seen on the web.  Spending more time at home with their nearest and dearest, people are discovering things about them that they never knew – and not only about their partner’s working day, but their habits and frustrations too.  In some cases, people have only just learnt their partner’s middle name, would you believe it?!!  Along with the discoveries about other inhabitants, there is of course, those unplanned distractions from dogs, cats and babies and those knocks at the door for deliveries!  So, how do you get the balance right?

The first rule is environment.  In the workplace, everything is at your fingertips.  To gain access to the information/objects that are in the centre of our working worlds, all we have to do in work is open a desk drawer, or reach over and it’s there.  Working from home is an entirely different dynamic and as such, there are a few nips and tucks to do at home in order to function properly.

Start by designating a work space.  Ensure you have everything you need to hand and your desk/table will be just like the one at work, just slightly different-looking!  If you have the space, another great way of designating your workspace is to separate it from the busier rooms in the house, such as your kitchen and living room.

Work is work.  Wherever you’re working from, the main aim is to be as productive as you are when you’re in the workplace.  A huge part of being productive is to be organised.  Organisation keeps you in a routine too.  Get yourself in the right mind-set and treat working from home as if you are in the workplace.  Dress up as you usually would for work – it’s likely you’ll need to for those meetings anyway – no cheating!  Bottoms as well as tops…

Struggling to get organised?  Check out our Desk Mate gift box with some great tools to keep you sanitised, organised and hydrated at home!

To clear your head and not go too stir-crazy, get into a routine of going on regular walks on your break.  Walking can give you clarity and clear all those cobwebs.  Not seeing your friends and colleagues is strange in itself, which will be particularly noticeable on those warm, Spring days – the days you would usually go for walks or a spot of shopping together on your breaks, so getting out of your workspace (even if at home) is just as important as it would be at work.

On the subject of your friends and colleagues, not having the same level of human contact as we usually do can take its toll on our stress levels!  KEEP IN TOUCH.  Living in world governed by technology, it’s easy to forget that our friends and colleagues are only a phone call away.  Forget sending that email and pick up the phone or video call that person you need to speak to – you’ll feel a lot better for it and much more can get resolved on a phone call, than an email tennis game!

So, working from home is easier than you think!  Just remember – environment, organisation, exercise and telephone and you’ve got this one nailed!

February 21, 2021 — Julie Selby