How to make your work from home productive

By Jinhuang Saw | Education

Dec 17

Many of us are working from home these days thanks to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and while we’re getting used to our new normal again, we still miss our work life and especially our colleagues. 

It’s about time to embrace the new normal as we navigate through these uncertain times at home. When else will we ever be told that staying at home can help save the world? What a time to be alive! 

Working from home (WFH) is likely to factor in your life, or that of the people whom you live with, more than it ever has before. 

Although it can appear to be fun working in a home environment, WFH comes with its fair share of distractions and can be difficult to adapt to if we don’t manage our time effectively.

For some people, WFH may lead to lack of productivity due to domestic disruptions that prevent the accomplishment of tasks. 

However, we have to admit that working from home is now part of the new normal following the Covid-19 pandemic, and that the practice may continue even after. 

For many people, this means working remotely for the first time, and getting used to the challenges of working from home requires adjustment. 

Successful work and home life integration is possible. There are ways to ensure that we stay productive while working at home, enjoy its flexibility and avoid workplace stress. 

1.     For WFH to work, you need to set aside an exclusive workspace.

Do not set up your “home office” in the bedroom or dining room. You need to designate an area for yourself only. Set up a proper space for your home office, preferably an area that is exclusive to you. 

2.     Ensure that the home office space is comfortable yet conducive for work.

You may include elements that provide a relaxing atmosphere, such as having your work desk next to the window, playing soft music, or placing potted plants on your table top. 

3.     Dress properly.

Most of those who work from home do not think that personal appearance is a priority.

But personal grooming helps to define your productive self. You need to be disciplined in this aspect, to wake up at the usual hour, shower before work and to be decently attired. Being properly dressed is especially vital when teleconferencing. 

4.     Stay organised and focused on your work.

Have a checklist of things to do. Just like in the workplace, you need to set targets for work completion and adhere to deadlines. 

5.     Take advantage of unregulated breaks.

Aside from lunch hour, there is no specific break time. So WFH does give you the advantage of having regular breaks which enhances mental wellbeing and productivity. 

6.     Light exercises as a stress reliever.

To relieve stress, you can do stretch exercises in between assignments or when work becomes overwhelming. 

If you are stuck at a task, walk away from your desk and do some light exercise, or go for a stroll – which can help to clear your mind and help you re-focus. Or you can have a cuppa and a snack, whichever works for you. 

On the part of employers, they should lower operational costs, optimise resources, reduce waste, improve competitiveness, boost staff morale and ensure that workers do not face job burnout. Productivity leads to profitability. 

Everyone needs to find a balance between their job and personal life. 

Stay positive, stay productive.

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