I’m Struggling with Working from Home – What Can I Do?
Kenyans are a creative people. Social media is awash with various memes on the “working from home” experience. Working from home is a relatively new phenomenon in the Kenyan professional ecosystem. However, following the advice of the National Taskforce on Coronavirus, it has fast become a reality for many working Kenyans.
So how can we stay productive while working from home? MedLux International Hospital has a few tips to help you stay on top of your game during this period.
Stick with a routine.
It might be tempting to roll directly out of bed and onto the sofa to start checking email. You need to establish a timetable when it comes to working from home. Set an alarm clock as usual, eat your breakfast, take a shower and get dressed as if you were actually going into work. You don’t have to put on a suit or tie, but you’ll need to treat the day like any other day at the office, minus the office. Determine regular working hours and factor in breaks and meal times.
Dedicate a physical area like a desk and set up for work.
It can be tempting to work from your bed, but it’s important to set boundaries when it comes to remote work. For some people, boundaries mean no TV or making sure the kids or pets are in a separate room.
Working from home also means you’ll have to fight off the many distractions of other things you’ll be tempted to do around the house. If you find yourself easily distracted, you might be someone who needs to set firmer boundaries when it comes to WFH.
Set up a desk area where you’ll aim to spend the majority of your day and stock this area with everything you’d find in your normal work place. Position your desk and chair so that your spine is aligned and make sure your chin is pointed straight ahead.
If you prefer, ditch the chair altogether and opt for a standing desk – whatever set up will make you feel more productive and ready to work.
Write out a daily and weekly list of goals involving your work and everything that needs to get done. You will feel better prepared knowing what’s ahead and having a plan to tackling it.
Get up and move.
It can be tempting to work for hours at a time without taking a break, especially if you’re comfortable with where you are. But it’s important to establish regular breaks throughout the day. Also, plan some exercise during the course of your day.
Try your best to not eat at your desk. Use the opportunity to work from home to develop good habits.
Check-in with team mates often.
Working from home can sometimes be isolating. Human beings are social animals and we have to find creative ways to stay connected with our colleagues and work friends. Check-in with people often, even if you don’t have a specific work-related question.
Text friends or colleagues throughout the day (but be careful not to get too distracted with your phone) and schedule video calls when possible. Virtual connections will never replace the importance of face-to-face interaction, but it can help make you feel like you’re more than just out there in the void.
Also make sure you’re touching base with your boss or team. In addition to this, regular check-ins with your team can help identify priorities and potential obstacles and keep people accountable.
Know your business hours.
Shut down and stop working at the same time that you would normally leave the office. Just as you established your regular working from home hours and routine, determine when you’ll stop working for the day.
And although it can be challenging in our 24/7, always connected world – you’ll need to be careful not to burn out since your work is now home with you all day.