Before we launch into what makes a good work from home space, I want to thank all of those working essential jobs who are keeping everyone who is staying home safe and fed. And yes, I’m at home, not sure what day it is, but I’m here, day in, day out, so I’d figured I’d talk about how to set up an effective work from home strategy.
Now that we’ve knocked that out of the way, let’s move on to other important aspects of your work from home strategy:
- Lighting: We’re all spending a lot of time inside away from other people, so maybe pull the shades or the blinds up and get some natural light by your computer if you can. Maybe access to that window will show you the birds outside your window. Maybe you name them. Maybe you talk to them. Maybe you report Harold, the blue jay, to HR for his incessant chattering.
- Seating: If you’re like me, you didn’t anticipate you’d be working from home every single day for the next however long, and likewise, are probably working on a dining room chair or something similar. A nice accent pillow behind the back or a folded fluffy towel on the seat helps make those long zoom sessions a little more comfortable.
- Hydration: A loss of body hydration of 1-2% is considered mild hydration, and can inhibit peak brain performance. Give yourself a goal of consuming half your body weight in ounces of water a day. Added bonus: since you’re at home, you can just reuse the same glass or bottle over and over again, and keep plastic out of the landfills!
- Distractions: I might not be a parent, but I do have a dog, and he wants to share his endless joy about the idea of me being home ALL DAY LONG. So, I started shutting the door to the office during the day. I know he can sleep all day, so why change that routine? For parents, it might not be as easy. But creating a schedule distributing “distractible” time when parent A stays at the dining room table and checks homework between emails vs “uninterrupted time” when parent B goes into the office and closes the door will go a long way in getting work done.
- Take a lunch: A common anecdote we hear from people working from home is that it is easier to work harder, and take less breaks, and not find time to shut off. Make sure you are stopping to chat with your family, taking your dog out for a quick walk around the block while maintaining social distance, or even just sit on the front stoop.
- Stay engaged with your coworkers: My team, missing each other 4 days into this exercise, implemented a Teams Happy Hour. Spouses, kids, dogs, and Lego projects are all welcome to participate, and it’s a great way to keep connected to those who keep you going in the office when you won’t see them in person for quite some time.
- Wear what will make you happy: I’ve read a lot of articles about getting up and getting dressed like you’re going into the office, and frankly I refuse to push that on you all. I draw the line at trying to tell you that wearing real pants will equate to productivity.
- Lastly, start each day with a grateful heart: We are healthy, we are safe, and we have a lot of work to do and I’m grateful for it. I’m sure none of us have perfect lives, but finding something to be grateful for each day is one key way to set yourself up for success.
But most of all, be well. All of us at Nexxt can’t wait to return to the office and see each other, but whether we are working from home or working in our offices in Philadelphia or Indianapolis, we are committed to helping where we can, whether it is now or in the future.
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