Waking up early, getting ready and punching-in on-time at work has always been one of the toughest things for me. But COVID-19 outbreak introduced something much tougher than this.
Waking up at regular time, getting ready and start working from home. A lot of people aspire to get a job that allows to “Work From Home”. Wake up at own time, no hurry to get ready, what to wear today is off the decision-making list, those hours spent in travel are spent on bed (sleeping), and many more such thoughts cross the mind as we hear from our friends from IT companies, that they can work from home. But is that the real case, is it really that easy. Do we ever think about the challenges this so called “FACILITY” comes along with?
Concentrating on work, while surrounded with all the personal distractions around is not a cake walk. That bed will constantly lure you to catch that quick 10 min nap, that power socket is out of reach from your comfortable seat, is that couch too comfortable to work, aaah.. these power cuts, the frequent hunger strokes. These distractors make their presence felt as one experiences WFH.
Well, it’s a fight between will power and distractors. It’s your fight with your surroundings😊
Why, suddenly, has my manager become so demanding? The first thought that crosses your mind after interaction over the phone. What does these frequent calls from boss mean? Is it done to ensure that I’m working? Am I not trusted enough?
These are frequent thought that capture your mind. However, it might not be true. Those calls might be required, answer to those questions might be important for the other person to proceed and plan other activities.
WFH puts a lot more responsibility on your individual shoulders, than what you handle while working from the office space.
Now, its not just about working, but it’s a fight with your emotions, needs and comfort. One must come out of their comfort zone, to be able to deliver relevant and desired output for the day. Question comes “what can be done”. Here are few suggestions:
1. Follow a schedule:
With your professional life, over the years, you and your body have adopted a set pattern to operate. Lesser the deviation from that schedule, better it will be for you to return to the normal routine, once WFH gets over. Maintain your eating habits, have timely breakfast and lunch, avoid unnecessary munching (just because its accessible). Have a fixed start and stop time for your work. Match your working hours with your stakeholders. It is critical for the success of your work, your absence in an important meeting during the day cannot be justified by the fact that you started working early and completed working hours for the day before the meeting.
2. “Things to do” list:
Create a detailed list of action points for yourself. Prioritize these action points on basis of your expected deliverables. Keep reviewing this list throughout the day. It will help you stay focused on your work and define target for yourself. By end of the day, you will have a clarity on your hits and misses. Misses can be carried forward to the next and you may Pat your own back for the hits.
3. Time to use that study table again:
Too much comfort can be big distractor. Avoid operating your professional life from your bed or a couch. Rather, use that study table which might be relaxing in one corner of the room. If possible have a chair that allows you to sit upright, with
your feet touching the ground. Have your power connection sorted to keep your electronic devices like laptop, mobile phone, etc. up and running. It will help you keep your energy level and focus alive.
4. Avoid Social Media interactions:
This is the most critical factor one needs to consider before starting to work from home. We have unknowingly become slaves to social media. Survival without food and water are imaginable, but a life without Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, WhatsApp, etc. seems impossible today. A survey in America found that 75% people blamed social media for their procrastination and lack of focus on work. To avoid this, you may want to mute a few not-so-important WhatsApp groups. Social media has power to pull our attention, spend hours reading about what other are doing, appreciating them, criticizing them and even disliking them. It doesn’t make any difference in their life, but it takes away from you the most expensive asset of yours, YOUR TIME.
5. Quick calls with colleagues/ boss:
Before the boss calls, you update her/ him about the progress of tasks assigned, ask questions on deliverables, share a quick chat on current situation. This can put you on the driving seat. Check with your team mates/ colleagues for any work-related update, share how you are managing things, learn from their experiences. Gossips, long discussions, useless talks can distract you and lead to missed deadlines for your work delivery.
6. Pamper yourself a bit:
During the initial phase of working from home, you may find it tiring and boring. Hence, it’s okay to pamper yourself with frequent yet short breaks. You may set an alarm for a 10-minute breather after every hour. With time, frequency of break can slowly be increased to 2 hours. During the break take a walk around, check how your colleagues / friends are coping up with this unusual WFH thing, make yourself a coffee, etc. Being strict with yourself on maintaining break duration will definitely help.
Working from home is fun, it allows you to stay in a protected and stress-free environment. Utilizing the time & available resources and avoiding the distractions are the key to success under any circumstance. Make it a wonderful experience for yourself and make your organization believe that work location doesn’t impact your performance negatively.
Have a lovely, productive and fun-filled Work from Home experience.
From India, Delhi
Promoted: UCLA - Executive Leadership in a VUCA World (Explore Course)
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