Keeping & Working Well from Home
by Hannah Sparkes
The current Covid–19 health crisis has affected us all one way or another, and for so many it now means working remotely for the foreseeable future.
For some this could be a whole new world and
understandably a daunting and nerve-racking experience. Whether this is your first time working from home or you’re a regular, I’ve put together a few tips to help keep us happy, healthy and productive
I really want to reiterate that although this is challenging time, we must remain positive and do all that we can to look after ourselves and each other.
1. Set up a “workstation” – which shouldn’t be a personal space to you (i.e.not your sofa or bed)! You need to be able to clearly identify a workspace that is different to a place that you use to relax. If possible, create a separate area with a desk or pop up table. This of course won’t be doable for everyone. So, if not, try and use a table surface and allocate one area of that to become your workspace. Keep it consistently the same place and inform your family that this is your workspace.
2. Have a morning routine. Although it might seem like a good idea working in your PJs, it really isn’t and it will soon make you feel unproductive. Continue with your morning routine as if you were going to work; shower, coffee, getting dressed, whatever you normally do. You’ll feel better for it once you’re ready and raring to go and sitting at your new “workstation.”
3. Structure your day. Each morning plan what you want to complete. Write a list and check it off once you complete a task. It is very satisfying looking back at the end of the dayand seeing everything you achieved.
4. Listen to music/podcasts. Working from home can be lonely compared to what office life is like. Put on some background music or pod casts to fill the silence and keep your morale up.
5. Take 5-minute breaks. It is very easy to get so stuck into what you’re doing and all of a sudden 6 hours have passed but don’t forgot to take breaks. Stand up, stretch, make a cup oftea and take your eyes away from the computer for a short while.
6. Get fresh air every day. Whether it’s going for a walk (in conjunction with any government self-isolating advice) a stroll around your garden, balcony or opening a window. Don’t underestimate the power of breathing in some fresh air each day. Especially whilst the weather is so beautiful!
7. Healthy food, healthy mind! If you can, meal plan for your days/week at home and again get into a routine. Eating healthy will give you the energy you need and make you feel good.
8. Stay social! It’s crucial to stay in touch with your colleagues socially, not only to discuss work and it will keep that normality aspect of everyday chats in the office. Arrange a team meeting at least once a week so you can have a pure social catch up.
9. Have an hour a day, outside of working hours where you put your phone/laptop etc in a different room. It seems so easy whilst we are home to respond to emails at all hours or scroll through social media and see what everyone else is up to. Your phone will probably be in your hand more than usual. Break this pattern. Put your electronic devices in a different room and do something else. I’ve just ordered some adult colouring books and jigsaw puzzles. You may think this is odd but I want a bit of “me time” each day to zone out of the chaos and I’m using this time to do something I wouldn’t usually.
10. Be there for each other -We are facing uncertain and challenging times but please remember you are not going through this alone and if you feel like you are, reach out to someone. Send a text/email or pick up the phone. Do whatever you feel most comfortable doing, don’t be afraid to ask for help. We are all in this together and we will get through this together.
Finally, I saw this poem the other day and it really made me smile, so I would like to share it with you:
And the people stayed home. And read books, and listened, and rested, and exercised, and made art, and played games, and learned new ways of being, and were still. And listened more deeply.
Some meditated, some prayed, some danced. Some met their shadows.
And the people began to think differently. And the people healed.
And, in the absence of people living in ignorant, dangerous, mindless, and heartless ways, the earth began to heal.
And when the danger passed, and the people joined together again, they grieved their losses, and made new choices, and dreamed new images, and created new ways to live and heal the earth fully, as they had been healed.” – Kitty O’Meara.