For the past few weeks, we have covered lots of different angles about the working from home lifestyle – the science and statistics, the pros of working from home as well as the cons – and now we wanted to close the series with some helpful information. For those who maybe haven’t figured out the perfect routine to make telecommuting fit for them, I asked one of our seasoned Nytronians to share some tips on how she masters working from home. Without further ado, here are some recommendations on how to stay sane when your home is also your workplace from our Global Project Manager extraordinaire, Monika Rezna:
- Have an “I can do it” mindset
In order to succeed while working from home, you must be driven, have a can-do attitude and be self-sufficient at problem-solving. If you are a passive person, you will never be happy working from home. You need to be proactive and want to learn and grow on your own. Being (or learning to be) independent, a self-starter and finding your way around a question or issue on your own are key. Communication with coworkers is great, but doing some of the legwork on your own before brainstorming together makes the process smoother and faster.
2. Create a work space/room to fit your needs
We are all very different when it comes to what helps us get our work done faster. Your work space needs to be conducive to productivity, have the least amount of distractive objects, and if you don’t live alone it must be known to them that when you’re in there, they should act as if you’re gone at the office and not to be disturbed. Test out different settings and figure out where you accomplish the most. Does the ocean make you calm and creative? Work with a nice view on the beach then! Working from home offers every possibility. I personally do have the experience to work from different places including coffee bars in Denmark and Heidelberg, airports, beach in Thailand, Malaga, Miami etc. And I enjoyed it a lot! 😊
3. Surround yourself by great colleagues
It may seem counterintuitive to talk about colleagues when you work from home, but having a great virtual team you can rely on who are just as motivated and driven as you are is a huge component of making it work. When interviewing, ask about company culture and what initiatives they put into place to foster community despite the distance. And of course, once in a while you should meet in person!
4. Go beyond e-mails
Just because you’re thousands of miles and time zones away, doesn’t mean you can’t develop a tight-knit circle with your coworkers. Leveraging the technology available today can help you create bonds with your colleagues as if you worked in the same building. Phone calls, WhatsApp groups, social media connections (if you’re comfortable with it) and video conferences can really help break boundaries and strengthen camaraderie.
5. Make time for out-of-the-house hobbies and activities
Just because you have to be at home to work for eight hours, doesn’t mean you need to stay there afterwards. Make an intentional point to leave the house to go work out, take that bachata class you’ve always wanted to, practice yoga, learn to ski, go grocery shopping, etc. With virtual workout programs and home deliveries of almost every kind, it’s getting harder to find a reason to leave the house. So, if you’re home for work all day, make sure the rest of your schedule takes place outside.
6. Set strong work-life balance boundaries
Make an effort to set structured work hours, like you would have if you went to an office setting, so that you can spend time and be present with those who matter to you. Whether it is your family, friends or a partner, it is always important to dedicate time to those relationships. This is what keeps you sane, even after a stressful workday. You sleep for eight hours, and work for another eight, so you need to make the rest count towards your personal fulfillment and recharge before another work round.
As you can see, these tips are not necessarily all geared towards work, but rather focused on the human element – and this is intentional. Many of those who work from home get lost in the work and unless you force yourself to have a “normal” routine where you get dressed, have a designated work space and take breaks to eat, replenish and refocus, the lines get blurred and it can lead to a stressful and unfulfilling work experience. I for one truly enjoy the luxury of being able to work from home, and only through applying the tips above I am able to do so in a balanced and effective way.
What about you? Do you work from home, too? Any tips on how you stay sane and balanced in your work-from-home journey? Share below!