Times are a-changing but you got this! Focus on controlling the things you can control.
Are you struggling to focus on work with everything going on in the world right now? If so, you're certainly not alone.
Working through uncertain and stressful times isn't easy. In fact, it can feel almost impossible when your mind is so taken up by fear and anxiety.
If you're struggling right now, there are some tips you can follow which may help. First, we'll look at one of the most effective ways to work through stress and uncertainty. Then we will follow up with how to successfully transition to working from home and finally we will give you several ways to work with young kids in the house.
Work through stress and uncertainty by practicing gratitude
Did you know that practicing gratitude can make a big difference in how you feel? Studies have shown that writing a list of the things you are grateful for, can drastically improve your mood.
By focusing on the things you're grateful for, it trains the brain to think more positively. You'll switch your focus from the bad things going on right now, to the good. For example, working from home may be challenging, but at least you're safe and have a home to work from.
Transitioning to Working from Home
Forced to work from home due to the global coronavirus crisis? The initial joy of being able to work from home can be quickly replaced by worry, a lack of motivation and never-ending distractions.
How on earth do you get things done when there are so many distractions? While working from home can deliver a lot of benefits, there are a lot of challenges it presents too.
Here, you'll discover some useful tips you can follow when it comes to transitioning to working from home.
Set up a quiet working space
With all of the distractions at home, it can be really hard to concentrate on work. This is especially true if you have kids at home. So, if you want to ensure you can get things done in peace, it's worth setting up a quiet working space.
Try and use a room that isn't frequently used during the day. Place a sign on the door when you're trying to work to let others know not to disturb you. Make sure the workspace is comfortable too because you won't get a lot done if you aren't comfortable.
This means, providing plenty of support for your back if you're working at a desk for example. If you aren't comfortable, you're not going to get much work completed. You'll also find it beneficial to surround yourself with things that make you happiest, such as photos of the family and plants or flowers.
Whether you're setting up a permanent or temporary office space, you need to ensure it has everything you need and it's quiet and comfortable to work in.
Always prepare for the day ahead
When you go out to work, you know there are things you need to do to get ready for the day. You have a routine that prepares you for work. However, when you start working from home you don't really have that.
Rather than thinking you can now work in your pajamas all day, make the effort to get dressed. Create a morning routine that sets you up for work. That way, you'll find it much easier to stay productive if your mindset is geared towards work and it will be an easier transition when it is time to go out to work again.
Maintain your usual "get ready" routine
Now that you've found yourself working at home, it can feel really strange. You don't know how to navigate your working day when you're not in the office. So, by maintaining your usual routine, it's going to help to ease some of that uncertainty.
This means, getting ready for work in the same way you usually do. Make sure you have a set time that you wake up and start work. So, wake up at the same time, have your usual cup of coffee and get dressed in your work clothes. Make sure you schedule breaks throughout the day just as you would if you were at the office. Just implementing and maintaining a routine can erase so much of the uncertainty you feel right now. It's amazing how much of a difference this can also make to your productivity.
Start as early as possible
One of the main challenges that can come from working from home is delaying the time you usually start. It's tempting to lie in bed and take longer to relax in the morning before starting. However, this only zaps your productivity.
If you want to ensure you stay productive, you'll want to start as early as possible. The positive side to this is that the earlier you start, the earlier you'll get finished.
Did someone say 'break time'? Take breaks to refresh
Suddenly being cooped up in the house all day can be detrimental to productivity and your psyche. It can cause issues with low mood and leave you feeling less motivated to get through your workload or turn into full-blown depression.
By taking regular breaks and making time to get out into the yard, it can really boost those productivity levels. Spend just 10-15 minutes relaxing in a lounge chair or reading a good book outdoors to help refresh productivity levels and declutter your mind.
Put the Breaks on Distractions
Set social media limits
You'll have a lot more time to check in on social media when you haven't got the boss breathing down your neck. However, it's easy to waste hours using social media accounts if you aren't careful.
Many people working from home find it useful to set limits on their social media use during working hours. It could be simply committing to using it during a specific time, for example, during your lunch. Having limits in place makes you more aware of how much you're using it.
Decide to check emails sparingly
Checking emails is important when you work from home. However, it can also take up a lot of time. So, you'll want to limit how many times you check them during the day.
Ideally, you'll want to check them first thing in the morning, then after you've completed each task you're working on.
Turn off notifications
Finally, a great tip is to turn off those notifications. Social media, news and app notifications can all prove to be really distracting when you're working from home. So, turn them off until after work to boost your productivity.
Ways to Work with Young Kids in the House
If you're stuck working from home with the kids, there's no doubt it's going to be challenging! The younger they are, the more challenging it can be. Any parent knows that getting anything done with their kids around can be almost impossible sometimes.
However, there are some great tips you can follow to make working from home with the kids much easier. It's all about finding the right balance. Here, you'll learn some of the best ways you can effectively work from home even with kids in the house.
Plan engaging activities
When you need to get on with an important project, it can help to get the kids immersed in an engaging activity. Craft projects tend to be a popular option. They are fun for the kids, and they take a while to complete.
You'll find hundreds of craft project ideas online. Try and find something which utilizes supplies you already have in the home. Then, they can be getting on with their crafts while you complete your important work tasks.
Create a routine early on
Working from home and having the kids home all day is a new experience for both you and them. Therefore, it's going to help if you create a routine as early as you can.
Kids thrive with a routine so make sure you all have set wake up, meal and bedtimes. Try and schedule time you can spend together on your breaks too. That way, they are still getting one to one attention from you, reducing the likelihood they'll bug you when you need to get on with work.
Take advantage of nap times
If your kids are still quite young, make sure you take advantage of nap times. These are the perfect opportunity for you to get a bulk of your work done without having to worry about the kids.
In usual times, you try to limit your child's exposure to technology. However, when you're trying to work from home, you'll find technology can be a real help. When you don't want to be disturbed, let the kids watch a movie or play on a smartphone or tablet device. This will keep them occupied for a longer period of time, allowing you to take that conference call for example.
It's not easy working from home with the kids, but it isn't impossible either. Follow the above tips to make it that little bit easier during these difficult times.
Follow these tips when you are transitioning to working from home. It can be a big adjustment, but there are lots of tools and tips out there to help. Stay focused on your end goal and you'll make it.
Take care and stay safe.