As we enter the South African National lockdown, following many countries around the world, we find the working industry move into a space it has never truly had to be in before. Remember all those companies that rejected remote workers, while now they have no choice as the entire work force now transfers into this direction. Here are some tips on how to work from home during the lockdown or self-isolation.
Try stick to your usual work Schedule
It’s important to stick to your work routine as in wake up at a set time, get ready and go to work. Sure, living from home is different and you might now be stuck with getting your kids set for self-isolation but do your best to stick to a schedule. Perhaps it’s no longer a 9-5 schedule but a 9-12pm and 1-4pm schedule. This lockdown is hitting us with major changes that can turn your life upside down if you don’t allow for some structure and routine.
Get out of your PJs
I know this tip might sound like an outrageous idea, because why should I not stay in my PJs all day, right? Wrong, it’s important to change out of your sleeping clothes into the outfit you are going to wear for the rest of the ‘work day’. Before you throw this tip out the window into the corona infested world, I’m not saying you should be dressed in a suit. Change into more comfortable clothes, a casual outfit or even change from your night PJs into your day PJs. Changing in the morning will help you mentally prepare that you are getting ready for a day of work.
Again, remember when your boss wouldn’t let you work from home and skype call into all your meetings? While who is laughing now? Not us, as Zoom, Skype, Google Hangouts and many more e-meeting platforms have boomed in the last few weeks. Utilise these sites with your team or clients to keep on track with everything that still needs to be done.
Blur your Background
Remember while you e-meet with your team or clients that you click on the blur background setting that most of these sites already have. We have seen the viral videos of that man who walks in on his wife’s work e-meeting in his undies or that video with the lady who didn’t switch off her camera while she went for a pee pee.
If the website you are using doesn’t have that function, then remember to have a clean ‘professional’ type background in a space that no one is going to disturb.
The last recommendation touches on the ‘do not disturb’ space to work in. This is very crucial for working at home. Don’t sit in bed and work from there, find a spot in your place to call your ‘home office’. This can be difficult if you live in a small place or share your space with family, friends or your noisy children (Tip 8 speaks about children). Do your best to find this space that has little noise or pop in those headphones and block out the rest of the people you are self-isolating with. For more tips read the post about ‘How to Not Kill Your Quarantine Partner’.
To Do List
Make a Day-Day To Do List. Now this will seem simple but can be so crucial when working from home. There are a lot of domestic temptations that can really distract you from your job. If you do not write up a To Do List in the beginning of the day, you will battle to finish your work load during the lockdown. Do a To Do List for the week as well.
Set Lockdown Goals
South Africa is in lockdown for 21 Days, therefore, set a 21 Day Goal/s. Make sure that you aim to achieve these goals by the time the lockdown period has passed. This will help you keep your focus on what you need to be achieving. Write these goals big on a piece of paper that you see every day or make a nice collage on Canva and make it your desktop picture so that you are always reminded of your goals when you turn your computer on.
There are Children at home
Those dreaded monsters will make you working from home extremely difficult but the tips I have given you above should also apply to them. When you wake up, change clothes and get ready for the day so should they. Sticking to a routine is crucial while you work at home but make sure that there is a routine in your living space that everyone living with you tries to stick to. If you’re not a single parent, tag team with another person that you live with. Look after the kids for 2 hours while the other person works and then swap.
Make it clear to your kids that this is your working time/space and that you need some time ALONE to work. This is a challenging concept for young children to fully understand because if they are home with no school work then why are you home with work. Perhaps give your children certain activities or chores to do during your work time to help get them out of your hair.
I hope that these tips on how to work during the lockdown period in order to be as productive as possible to help the cogs of your business and job continue to turn. This is important so that you don’t feel overwhelmed when getting back to work in a month’s time. This will be a difficult time but allow it to develop you in business in order to be innovative, creative and able to do your job anywhere in the world. Stay home, work and get shit done.