In this time where working from home has become part of the “new normal,” there’s been a learning curve for those unaccustomed to this lifestyle. Working outside of an office environment can be tricky as distractions can easily disrupt productivity. After all, you’re in your personal space, not your typical professional environment. Laundry needs to be done, the kids and pets need attention, and the dishes have been piling up. Or, on the flip side, your desk is always calling to you and you can’t turn off “work mode.” Your work day doesn’t end as easily when your office is right there and that project is so close to being completed.
We’ve put together some of the top tips for helping you stay productive while working from home and being able to disconnect when the day is done.
Set yourself up for success right at the get go. Make sure all your technical devices are set-up to work properly. Think about how you’re communicating – test out meeting platforms in advance to ensure the camera and microphone are working correctly and you’re not scrambling to work through issues at the start of that important call.
Make sure your internet is in tip-top shape. Brookfield Residential’s new homes in NorCal are great for working at home. These homes all have fiber internet to the residence and Wireless Access Points are included – great for helping deliver a WiFi signal throughout the whole house.
Structure Your Day
Map out your day as if you were working in the office – a structured schedule is key to staying productive. If you need to get in eight hours of work, try blocking your time – a three-hour block, a two-hour block, and another three-hour block. If you need to run errands or take care of other things, do them outside your blocked work time or during your “breaks.”
Segment what you need to accomplish and when. Make to-do lists with the help of digital list makers like Microsoft To-Do or Google Tasks. Having a checklist helps you identify priorities and visualize your progress.
Design a Workspace You Love
With so many floor plan options to choose from, your new home at Brookfield Residential NorCal is sure to offer the perfect location for your home office. Once you’ve found the space in your home, spruce it up to be stylish and functional. Look at the space as you would an actual office or cubicle – put up a pinboard with inspirational photos, add a desk calendar, designate a spot for your phone, notebooks and files. Implement good ergonomic practices to ensure those working hours are comfortable.
Know When to Put Work Down
It’s important to schedule small breaks during the day – when working from home, it’s easy to get caught in a pattern of working straight through the day and can quickly burn out. Whether it be a short break to stretch, check your phone, and get a snack or a longer break to eat lunch and get some fresh air outside, stepping away will do wonders for productivity once you get back to work.
Establish your boundaries and know when to mark the end of the day. Once the work day is done, leave your computer behind, shut the office door and shift your mindset to your home-life. Find things you like to do to signify the end of the workday and start of the evening – for example, light a candle to set a relaxing ambiance, shake up a cocktail or go outside and enjoy the sunset.
Most importantly, cut yourself some slack. If working from home is new to you, give yourself time to settle in and figure out what works for you and what doesn’t. The key is to keep a good work-life balance, establish boundaries, and take care of yourself.