The COVID-19 pandemic has made companies embrace innovations to work trends and setups. Industries of nearly all fashion were reprimanded by the situation and have forcibly left with the sole option of putting their employees on work from home mode. This posed a risk to the mental health and overall wellbeing of workers since everyone was confined at home and mandated to build their workspace to function in a virtual office in an effort to minimize the contagion.
Quarantining in time of the Coronavirus, later on, was found to be a contributor to the sprouting of other health issues we are facing today like obesity, smoking, excessive alcohol drinking, and cases of cabin fever at an increasing rate. With an emphasis on remote workers, Buffer’s State of Remote Work Report (2020) shed light on the common challenges employees at home usually battle with. Twenty-two percent of the employee-respondents find it hard to unplug after work, nineteen percent experience feelings of loneliness from isolation, seventeen percent struggle communicating through a platform, ten percent are distracted at home and eight percent lack the motivation to keep going. Relatively, Ellfein (2020) revealed that almost 67% of his study’s respondents reported experiencing higher levels of stress since the virus outbreak. He also added that the most commonly reported hindrance to workers’ productivity is their difficulty concentrating. This is not a surprise since a global crisis is expected to overwhelm the nation and trigger fear which can lead to loss of focus and even loss of motivation and efficiency. It took a while for everyone to brave the storm and acclimatize with the situation foregoing.
Slowly but surely, it seemed that people have well-adjusted to the new normal way of life after quite some time. In Apollo Technical (2021), a more recent study, remote workers reported already feeling happy by twenty-two percent compared to the employees working in the real physical office. They claimed to experience less stress and have a better work-life balance. Prodoscore (2021), parallelly, also have discovered an increase in productivity rate within the remote workplace by 47%. However, even if remote workers say they are already used to the digital nomad lifestyle and take their day-to-day jobs online as a piece of cake, the reality is that remote work can sometimes get monotonous and bland. Luckily, you have yourself a list of a few lifestyle tips to double your productivity and become “fit” to work from home.
Orchestrate your home workspace.
The difference between your regular office and your home office is the surroundings. The people, the desk, computer, internet speed, and even the taste of coffee. To fire your working spirit, redesign your home office in such a way that it is conducive to working. Initially, you can declutter and keep your allotted space free from noise, nuisance, and distractions. Find furniture and shipping discounts to invest in an ergonomic chair, a sleek office table, and ample lighting. Log in on Spotify and play lo-fi music in the background to get the modern office feels.
Perform your job only within your self-initiated work schedule. Commit to this habit. Respect the time your company pays you for so, in return, you can also respect your time off work. Never try putting all things in one bowl. Do not mix house chores and job functions altogether — this will only result in loss of momentum, motivation, and concentration. Setting boundaries can also allow you to gauge whether you are overworking for the day or done earlier than usual.
Love your breaks.
Enjoy a quick mental health break by making yourself some coffee. This can help in renewing your energy level and prepare you to get going with a better perspective or outlook. Take the work lightly. Do some stretches, an arm exercise, or breathe the fresh air. If your paid leaves allow it, take a time off to do something productive or something you have been deferring for a long time. Whether long or short breaks, it will not hurt to take and enjoy it.
Install some Gmail tools.
Gmail tools can make you more efficient in performing your job functions. Research some Google Add-ons like Streak, Grammarly, and Checker Plus as these may be particularly useful in making your tasks done fast, easy, and with high accuracy. Craft creative ways that can help you cut down work hours so that you can have more time for other things or people.
Even if remote work does not require a rigid schedule, routines that you commit to are helpful when you get stressed sometimes. It does not always have to be associated with work since you also need it for yourself. Commit to those that help you lose weight like a workout routine, a daily morning yoga, or those that your skin can thank you for in the future like the simplest skincare routine. Doing these habitually, you will be surprised at how easy it really is to make others. You will also self-observe that you are becoming even more disciplined and productive.
Get that quality sleep.
Studies revealed that sleep deprivation is detrimental to your concentration abilities and can decrease your overall job performance. Make an effort to give yourself quality sleep by revisiting your sleeping habits and practices. Maybe it is about time to change your interior design, get rid of dirty linens, or just remove distractions for a state of serenity. While you are at it, try some essential oils in the dehumidifier or diffuser. If you prefer, play a mellow track as a lullaby. Ensure that your sleeping space is conducive for nothing but sleep. Keeping televisions and computers out of your bedroom, and put your smartphone to rest, so that the brain only associates your bed for sleep. Quality sleep should be invested in to improve job performance at optimum efficiency and capacity.
In these times of stress, challenges and uncertainties, the biggest considerations would always be your physical and mental health because your body needs them in the frontline. The tips above are only the tip of the iceberg. Do remember that it is only through a creative approach in things that can make your life, especially this one you are living in the pandemic, even more meaningful.