As the world grapples with a global pandemic, many people who are used to going into an office now find themselves typing away at their kitchen tables. Even for those who have experience working from home, this is a challenging time to be productive. When you need to focus, try these four tips:
1. Create a schedule.It can be helpful to give your day some structure, especially if you have kids at home. Set defined times for when you’ll work on certain tasks. Be realistic about what you can get done. You might want to set three top priorities to accomplish for the day and put your focus toward those — anything else you get done, you can consider a bonus.
2. Use the Pomodoro Technique.This time-management technique works when you’re struggling to sit down and focus. Try working for 25 minutes, then taking a five-minute break, then getting back to work. Set a timer to stay on track. You can also change up the work/break intervals to something that works better for you.
3. Take a lunch break.Staying properly fueled is best for your physical health — and that affects all other aspects of your well-being. Don’t feel bad about taking some time to nourish yourself in between emails and virtual meetings. In the long run, this will make youfeel more refreshedand better able to tackle the rest of the day.
4. Organize an office space.If you already have a defined office space, that’s great. Many people are finding they need to get creative, though — like the closet office or ironing board desk. (Check out other unconventional setupshere.) Work with what you have. Now could be a good time to get some supplies, such as adecorative sorterfor paperwork, afile cabinetfor storage, or amagazine fileto keep brochures, books, and the like neatly organized.
If working from home is new to you, cut yourself some slack — this is a challenging time for many reasons, and your productivity may not be where it normally is. Fortunately, in this age of technology and connectivity, working from home can be effective as long as you set yourself up for success.