Ways to keep yourself productive in your Home-Office settings

Sarmad Khan

For most people who didn’t have the chance to work remotely previously, the thought for a home-office or remote-work scenario might be something like this:

“A relaxing day! You are laying on your bed in your pajamas, laptop at your side while checking your emails, connecting with peers or clients (if required), or doing creative work, while adjusting your pillow or attending a virtual session while your NETFLIX is running on TV.

Your pet dog is roaming around with his/her disciplinary routine (no barking etc.) or the pet is just beside you and your hands on its head, calming it while designing the project work. Your kids are surprisingly quiet and busy with storybooks or their play-chores.”

Come to reality — the real experience is far away from these illusions, right? Due to the pandemic scenario going around the world, the work dynamics have suddenly changed — causing more and more people to work from home. And, as it is a new mantle for most of us, we are struggling to cope. All of a sudden — (for some or most without home-office experience), all hell breaks loose & the illusion turns into a different state.

Remote-office work is being there for a number of years already, obsoleting the regular office-based work scenario in some industries. According to Forbes in one of their 2019 articles- renowned organizations like Amazon, Intuit, Appen, Kelly Services, Dell, etc. have embedded this work culture in their relevant divisions.

They have also incorporated this style for most of their divisions too for enabling flexibility, employee satisfaction; plus fostering easier executions. Debates were there about whether this style works better or performs worse; not only across industries but also within industries where the norms were already being established.

Rollback to the current scenario, the discussion for today is: how businesses are making the transformation and what is the simplest way to ensure maximum productivity. Organizations are monitoring the current state of work within these parameters to track the success and results; so that after the situation gets better — they can compare & contrast it with regular office-work style and take a better decision (transform) for the future.

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The lists I’m about to provide are tested by multiple experts or remote-office-based entrepreneurs. To be on the safe side, I have tried out most of the listed essentials (except the suggestions for the parents to manage their remote-office time) and I’ll recommend adjusting the list based on your work pattern.

Try these out, test whether these are flexible enough to be adjusted for your work pattern, and see the result for yourself.

1. Create a designated space for your work (if available space is there).

Because you have to. If you can’t separate it, your mind will not be able to distinguish between regular office hours and extended office hours & you might end up working from your bed or living room sofa, with your NETFLIX on along with your laptop on the side. The other reason is, it will help you to keep your work neat & clean, along with maintaining a strong discipline.

2. Prepare a schedule to follow.

A top-line timetable is required at your end. Along with in-person or virtual meetings, it will help to slot out the activities you are about to perform during office hours effectively. Make sure you are getting up from your chair every 1 hour to reduce the chance of back pain.

Close your eyes for at least 5 minutes every 2 hours (if you are looking at your personal computer/ laptop constantly). Drink water at an interval to keep you hydrated (and it will help you take your washroom breaks at a regular interval). Take your breaks (& take it entirely).

3. Boundaries to put.

As you are doing your work from home, you are sharing your space with other people in the house and you require to set some boundaries to get the work done. Due to the current scenario, you might be sharing the home with all other family members at the same time. Be sure to go on breaks and interact with the family members, but also inform them about your designated workspace and time schedules to maintain.

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