Though people dream about working from home, the ultimate professional freedom comes with its own set of challenges. From finding inspiration to get started each day to celebrating wins while flying solo, it can be tough to stay motivated and maintain boundaries and balance. Fortunately, there are a number of things that can help make working from home a healthy and happy experience. Read on for four tried and true tips.
- Set up a dedicated space. We bet you’ve seen some hilarious memes that show people working from home — you know, the ones that illustrate self-employed or remote workers sitting on the couch with their laptop in sweats; or worse, working from bed. While it can be tempting to stay in whatever you slept in or to hunker down in your bedroom, your body will appreciate an ergonomic setup that ensures good posture and eases the potential pain. Even more, we’ve read that having a dedicated space (be it an office, desk or corner of a common area) can aid focus and help jump start creativity by building “associative triggers” that tell your brain to get to work.
- Stick with a routine. Working from home grants you an amazing opportunity to design much of your day. Make the most of it by creating a solid morning routine that helps you build healthy habits. Start your day on a high note by tackling important stuff first; getting it out of the way early will ensure nothing derails you too much later on. Carve out time for an adequate amount of sleep, a daily walk or workout, a healthy mid-morning snack and protein-based lunch you prepare at home, and something to look forward to each night. Pay attention to when you’re most productive, and plan your routine around your rhythms. If you don’t work from home regularly, try to incorporate the best parts of your day-to-day from the office into your WFH routine. Consistency is key.
- Keep healthy working hours. You might choose to work super early in the morning or burn the midnight oil but take caution to avoid burning out entirely, stacking long days on top of one another. Do your best to stick to a healthy work week, and carve out time for creative hobbies, fitness, family, and friends. This is especially important if you’re pursuing a new business or entrepreneurial path. Though it might seem like you’ll never tackle your to-do list, it’s important to remember that work-life is a marathon, not a sprint.
- Schedule social time. Working from home can be lonely, even if you’re an introvert or stay connected to colleagues or clients digitally during the day. To avoid falling into an unintentional, anti-social spiral, be proactive about making social plans. Your time away from your desk might include networking events, happy hours, sweat sessions with a friend, or a fun dinner and drinks during the weekend. Use your calendar full of fun things as motivation to hustle hard during your scheduled work time and come back reinspired.