This past Spring, many of us were pushed into an unfamiliar environment – working from home. The sudden shift from a 9-to-5 office life to turning our living rooms into our new cubicles left us all wondering how we will work from home with siblings, significant others and kids around the house? Will it be easier or harder to work from home?
We also wondered how communication and productivity between our colleagues would work, primarily using chat and video software to engage. All these factors have left many Americans stressed out during work hours and searching high and low for ways to improve their productivity and reduce the avalanche of stress. Here are some work from home tips that have helped me stay productive and manage stress.
Eat healthy and stay hydrated while maintaining a schedule.
Working from home has changed up all of the routines that we had in place when we were able to commute to work. We are given the luxury to sleep in a bit later and just crack open our laptops to get our day started without having to dress up or get ready. This has changed some of the important eating and hydration habits we’ve had in place.
Making sure you are eating the right foods, having three full meals, and filling up your water intake throughout the day are important for your brain power and overall health. The brain burns about 20% of your body’s calories so it is important to eat the right foods so you can stay concentrated and focused the entire day.
Organization is key! Especially in a new environment.
Not having to go into the office, I know we’ve all slipped up and gotten a bit disorganized. It’s important to write down daily and weekly tasks so you can stay on the ball. Not being in the office around your colleagues to communicate tasks and assignments can make you forget and fall behind on your work
To counteract this, I’ve found that keeping my home office similar to how my office desk looked has been helpful. Using sticky notes to write down urgent or quick tasks has been helpful, as well as keeping an e-version of my priorities in my notes tab on my laptop. Understanding no day will go as planned, but trying to complete as many tasks as possible while prioritizing each, helps and doesn’t allow you to procrastinate.
According to studies, for every hour of planning, three to four hours are saved from redundancy, waiting for information, not being prepared and poorly managed tasks. Plan ahead and you can be more productive and efficient!
Sometimes music is the answer.
47,000 minutes I spent listening to music on my Spotify app this year, according to the annual Spotify Wrapped report they send each of their users. Time well spent if you ask me, because music helps me get through my day when all else fails and I truly think it is the best medicine when you are stressed out.
In fact, studies show that certain songs have reduced 65% of anxiety just by listening to the song once and it reduced physiological resting rates by 35%.
Now for me, certain genres and styles of music work better than others for specific tasks I am trying to complete. If I need to get more administrative work done and don’t have to use the creative part of my brain, I can throw on some songs with vocals and lyrics. If I need to write and get creative, I will put on instrumental music or something softer where I can write along with the music, instead of having a bunch of vocals in my head already.
This year has thrown many curveballs at us and it has been tough to adjust to everything on the fly. Keeping my routine and work schedule consistent while being organized has helped me stay productive and keep my stress to a minimum. If you are stressed out and feel like you are suffering from burnout, try to switch up your daily schedule to help you get out of the rut you may be stuck in.
What are you best work from home tips? Drop it in the comments below!