9 tips to survive remote work during COVID-19
How to properly organize remote work and maintain a high level of personal efficiency at home? In this article on Aptitude-Tests-Practice.com we answer these questions.
Over the past months, the lion’s share of business has moved online. Working in pajamas and your favorite slippers has become the norm. However, both employers and employees note that the quality of remote work has decreased compared to the classic office option.
This is largely due to discipline, which is more difficult to maintain at home. It is difficult for our brain to get used to the idea that now our own home has two functions at once – a home (“sweet home”) and a workplace. And you need to switch quickly.
For such an adjustment with a minimum of inconvenience, you need to adhere to a few simple principles that will not only increase your personal efficiency, but also make your everyday life more comfortable.
Your workplace should be as isolated as possible from external influences. Even if it is physically impossible to isolate oneself from the beloved household members you should take measures:
- agree that this writing / kitchen / dining table is your workplace. No one comes here from 9:00 to 18:00 on weekdays.
- equip your desk now in accordance with your job responsibilities. Remove all unnecessary things. The good news is that the photo of the family on the table is no longer required. Here it is, family! It looms before your eyes and pretends to try not to interfere with you.
Your body does not perceive home clothes as work uniforms. In the morning, getting out of bed, do your usual exercise including dressing for work, with one exception – we don’t go to work, it is already here.
One more positive news. If you need music for productive work, turn it on. This is not your office, where the hysterical howl of the coffee machine is interspersed with the uterine gurgle of the cooler. Freedom from sleepy bores, which give only peace and quiet.
However, don’t get carried away with the bass. Be aware of those around you – family members and neighbors. However, you will not forget about the household. And this is the next point.
This is not your office. Try to explain to your 3-year-old son that for the next 30 minutes you are giving a report to the board of directors, and if he wants that cool red big fire truck, it’s better not to disturb you for half an hour. And nevertheless make an agreement. With everyone. With children too.
Explain to your family how you plan to organize your work day. Designate the time of important meetings in advance, when you are not only absolutely not to be disturbed, but it is highly undesirable to make noise at home.
Here you yourself will have to be flexible. Try adjusting meeting plans to match your household’s schedule. Does your child have a quiet hour at 13:00? Then use it to schedule an online meeting. Did your wife ask you to look after the children with one eye while she is at the doctor’s appointment? Do not schedule meetings for this period of time. Discuss your work schedule with your family in advance. Find a compromise. In the end, hang the schedule on your desk – it is useful for you, and the family will understand when you are available.
Create a daily routine close to your previous work schedule. And the point is not only that sooner or later you will have to return to office. The body tunes in to work under certain circumstances. The more familiar the working mode is, the easier the working process will go.
The undoubted positive effect of remote work is more time that you previously spent on commuting. However, this is where Parkinson’s law comes into play: “Work takes all the time allotted for it.” Try not to stretch your “pleasure”, that is, the working day until late at night. And use the free time for self-development, sports, hobbies, etc.
Less motion and overall exercise puts you firmly on the weight gain path. You don’t have to go to work, and the refrigerator is there, just stretch out your hand.
There is no need to describe the diet in details, there is plenty of such information in the internet. Eat on a schedule. No unhealthy boredom snacks. Also try not to eat while you work. Be firm on that.
In conditions of self-isolation, the consumption of alcoholic beverages is growing for a reason. Almost all free time is spent at home. There is no need to drive or talk to people for fear that your “cheerful” state will be visible. You can sip your favorite whiskey or beer without consequences and still do your remote work. But without consequences?
Let’s omit the effect of alcohol on the body. It is better to recall that performance is rapidly declining after use of alcohol. Even if it seems that after a shot you can move mountains, and the creativity has clearly increased – this is far from the case. The reaction speed decreases, memory fails, the number of errors increases, and so on. Of course, boredom can be difficult to fight while sitting at home. Therefore, our next point is …
First, consider work interruptions. If you belong to that happy group of people who managed to organize the work process without interference from others, initiate pauses in work yourself.
Now no one calls you to the smoking room or to have a cup of coffee, it means that everything is “on your conscience.” Take active breaks – walking around the house or in the fresh air, exercising, playing with children, etc.
At normal times, we willy-nilly go outside to get to work, go to the store, take the children to kindergarten, and so on. Staying at home, the body experiences an acute shortage of fresh air and sunlight. During a break, try to “breathe” as much as possible outside or at least on the balcony. Be sure to let some fresh air in the room where you work.
A bright future has finally come – you don’t need to get up a little light to trudge to work. It’s already here. Is that great? How to look. It is tempting to set an alarm clock at 8:59, so that, when you wake up, you can login in the corporate network, and only then, slowly, get out of bed. Or not to get out at all, because no one sees you.
You can reply to emails and calls while lounging under the covers. You do not need to go to bed early, which means you can surf the net or play videogames until the middle of the night.
As a result of this “separation” we get a disrupted regime and lack of sleep. So, we should build a schedule, focusing on the beginning of the working day and the time it takes to get adequate sleep.
There are dozens of ways to organize a gym at home without even purchasing expensive equipment. Try to get a minimal set – horizontal bar, expander, dumbbells.
Workouts are easy to find on the internet. With the proper approach and perseverance, there is every chance not only to maintain, but also significantly improve your body.
Chatting with friends
One of the most frustrating aspects of remote work is lack of live communication with friends and colleagues. It is psychologically difficult to move to a lower level of relationships, socialization. However, there is every chance to strengthen relations and even find new acquaintances at the current level of development of communications.
All that is technically necessary for organizing an online party is a computer with a video camera or smartphone and a stable network. It is important that such an event has a host, who is also a moderator. Take on this role! It is better if it is not only an online feast, but an evening of contests, for example. Organize a quiz or interactive game. Yes, even a drawing contest – the topic is given and the time for execution is limited, then the winner is determined by voting. There are a lot of options.
Food and drink can also be another common theme. Agree that you cook a paella or a borsch today. Tasting will also become an active component of the “teleconference”, along with other entertainments. Online is a rare opportunity to arrange a retro show of joint photos if it is a meeting of old friends. You can also arrange a film screening with further discussion.
You can breathe new life into relationships with people far away. Yes, and sometimes it takes months to get out to a friend’s next street, but now such a unifying factor disappears.
Do not sit idle for a long time, find something you like. Remote work does mean more free time to spend on something new. Take a closer look at possible new hobbies, make an old dream come true – start writing a novel or script, start repairs, take on increased obligations, learn new profession to get a better job, practice aptitude tests to perform 100%. Live, dare! When, if not now?