How to work from home (During a pandemic)

Patrick Johnson
Written by Patrick Johnson
on March 23, 2020

Remote work used to be discussed as something that was on the rise - companies were allowing their staff to do it, freelancers were doing it most of the time, and digital nomads were doing it everywhere around the world. But right now, nearly all of us are working remotely, because we have to.

It’s not the ideal situation for testing out whether or not working from home works for you, but perhaps when things are back to normal, a lot of us will end up doing it more often. Maybe you’ll be more productive, or you’ll appreciate the chance to work at your own pace, or enjoy being around your family.

This will be a journey of discovery for people who’ve never worked remotely before, so here are some tips from people who’ve done it, and those in the know.

Follow a routine

We know it’s appealing to stay in your pyjamas all day. And some people may work well like this. But the majority of us won’t, because it doesn’t put you in the right headspace to work well. Act like you would on any work day - get up at a decent time, have a shower, have breakfast, get dressed. Do the normal stuff you’d do if you’re going to the office, and then make sure you have a workspace in your home to go to.

Talk to your network

There are a myriad of different communication software options out there, and for individuals and teams who aren’t used to being remote they will be vital over the next few weeks. Slack is one of the most-used amongst these, along with Zoom for video calling, but there’s still Skype and Facebook, and many others. Your team likely already has their preference, but this might be a whole new experience for you all, so don’t fear making a classic phone call as well. It’s always nice to hear another voice when you’re stuck indoors.

Don’t overwork

Burnout is an oft-discussed subject, and a lot of companies are becoming more acutely aware of its effects. And when you’re only working from home, it can be very easy to overwork yourself as you’re not on a regular schedule. Make sure you take time for breaks, and not just in your house. Go outside, go for a walk or a run, get some fresh air and take time for yourself. And if you are doing something indoors, consider stretching, or yoga, or whatever helps you get your focus back.

Watch your diet

Everybody enjoys food, and if you’re not the type to eat at your desk, then you’re probably not in too much danger here. However, when you’re at home, your tendency may be to eat when it’s convenient, and snack a little more than usual (if just because the snacks are more freely available to you!). Make sure you have a dedicated lunch time, don’t drink gallons of coffee to keep you going, and stay hydrated through the day. Actually you should be doing all of this all the time, so stick to it!

Be creative

If you’re in a field where you have the opportunity to think outside of the box, this is a great opportunity to try something new. You can be creative in your content creation and marketing, try introducing new types of content, and try not to mention what’s going on in the world too much. Take people’s minds off of things!

Be kind

The final tip is to remember that your home is not an island. You’ve probably got people all around you who could use a kind word or maybe help with getting supplies if they’re totally quarantined. In moments of crisis, the world needs people who reach out and help one another, not look after only themselves. So take the time to offer help and advice as well as looking after yourself, your family and your business.

There are a ton of other articles similar to this right now, so if you want more inspiration, you can check out:

Stay healthy, and stay safe!

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