So, you are probably finding yourself unexpectedly having to transform into working remotely (which if you’re doing it right means; from home). While some people are cheering, others might have a hard time navigating in this new space (for various reasons). Did you also find yourself in this new setting, sweating over how to remain productive now when your workspace has changed? Then, this bible is for you.
1. Shut it all off
We’re constantly exposed to never-ending information and it easily becomes overwhelming if we don’t actively put a stop to it. Especially at a time like this! The most important lesson I learned when becoming a digital nomad was to find effective ways to shut the noise out. And by that I mean, put your phone on flight mode. If your team is communicating through an internal communication tool like slack, put your status as “do not disturb” unless you need to be reachable. Shut down general phone notifications. Draw your lines and set your boundaries!
2. Allow yourself / encourage your team to be transparent
There’s nothing worse than having to work when you feel like you can’t even keep yourself together. Pushing through confusing emotions might work for some, but most of us have a hard time focusing if we don’t get it off our chests. It doesn’t matter if we’re facing a pandemic or not, we’re never alone in what we’re feeling. If you’re working from home right now, you probably have some kind of communication channel where your team is based.
Whatever you would have said to a colleague at the coffee break – put it into words and email/slack/facetime it instead. If you’re an employee or manager, check in with your team regularly to see how everyone is doing. Don’t be afraid to take the lead and to lead by example. You might be responsible for the team but you’re also human – show that! Of course, we shouldn’t force transparency onto people who don’t feel comfortable sharing, but we need to create space for those who do need it. Releasing the tension will make it a lot easier to concentrate, but be mindful about your mental state and if you’re at a stage where you’re unable to work I strongly encourage you to talk to your manager about it.
3. Find a place that feels like work
Maybe you live in a tiny space, got kids running around, or have roommates to consider? Working from home can be distracting for a lot of people and for a lot of different reasons! This, of course, doesn’t apply to everyone but if you’re used to the office setting, transitioning to working from home can be challenging and unmotivating.
The most important thing is to make sure to define the area where you work and where you don’t. Set up your laptop and with the resources you’ve got, try to make it feel as workable as possible (might be enough to just clear the space out and put your favorite coffee mug on the table). Try to stick to your ordinary routine and dress as you would when going to the office. The more challenging this is for you, the more important it is for you to set a structure for yourself.