Here at Hope-Beckham, we have been working from home since March due to the coronavirus, and it looks like there is no end in sight. Companies like Google have recently announced they are keeping employees working from home until summer 2021. It is great to see companies putting the overall health of their employees as such a priority. Extending working from home longer allows employees more time to focus on their work and their wellbeing instead of feeling forced back into the office, paranoid about their health. Below are some tips to help manage your work-life balance while staying out of the office for the foreseeable future.
Set a routine and stick to it
One of the best tips for working from home is to set a schedule and stick to it. Now that so many people are constantly at home with their technology and ability to work, work hours get muddled and may drag on much later than if you were in the office. Setting your schedule will help create a work-life balance that is very hard to establish if you do not set boundaries early on. Part of my routine that I love now is my commute time. Instead of waking up, getting ready, and then driving 30 to 45 minutes to the office, I use what my commute time used to be to begin my day and walk my dog. I used to love my commute in the morning because it was a time to drink my coffee and organize my thoughts for the day, now I organize my thoughts on my walk and get some fresh air before the office day.
Don’t forget to communicate and socialize
The most important tip for working from home is to over-communicate. In the office it was so easy to call a team member to your office and talk about a client, now these conversations are mostly through email, and it is tough to keep track of numerous conversations with one client. Our team has become more connected communicative since working from home to keep everyone in the loop! One of the hardest parts about working from home is the loneliness. I am a people person, so not going into the office and seeing everyone has been hard and has felt a little isolated. Thankfully, Hope-Beckham also has weekly Zoom calls to catch up on our work and look ahead at our work. These Zoom calls are a great way to reconnect with everyone, and it helps to see everyone’s face once a week.
Being home all day can be draining and very distracting! One easy way to combat this is to have a designated work zone in your home and plan out breaks. Having a designated spot for your new “office” helps put your mind into the work zone and has proven to keep me focused. If I don’t work in my designated office, I find myself snacking and becoming much more distracted throughout the day! Another essential part of self-care is to schedule your breaks and have healthy food around the house. It is easy to munch on food all day, and if you stock up on healthy snacks and prepare full meals, it will make your days much brighter.
Overall, these times are confusing and new for everyone. Give yourself a break and a learning curve! I would never have thought that within my first year of being in the office, I would be working from my apartment, but here we are. The best advice I can offer is to keep on keeping on and adjusting to the new normal and embracing the new environment. One day we will return to the office when it is safe, but who really knows.