How to balance between personal and professional fronts while working from home
"Work from home" matter of factly has never been in absolute oblivion in the past. It has been on the scene for a considerable time and is not a new concept altogether but has suddenly gained familiarity and popularity like some phoenix rising from the ashes courtesy COVID-19 pandemic. You can actually see ads stating "Work from home" littering all over the internet in these present COVID times. Seems like it has jumped into the mainstream vernacular in tow with Tele Working / Commuting with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, changing the societies and economies of the world substantially.
"Work from home" is the new buzzword in the corporate world and now it is here to stay, making jobs mobile and people stationary. It might appear chaotic and daunting initially, but perseverance and sophistication of human skills and technologies will eventually accustom everyone with the new format of co-learning, co-working and co-living.
As they say every coin has a flip side, there is a segment of the populace that believes that Work from home is a blessing in disguise but there is a chunk that doesn't consider it a winner hands down. People might conclude working from home to be as cool as sleeping in late, lounging around in the pajamas, long leisurely lunches but what people need to realize is that even though it offers a great amount of flexibility it's still a professional job with accountability and answerability intact.
To cut the long story short, let's get into some real business. If you are one of those who are striving to sail through these testing times and trying to strike a balance between personal and professional fronts while working from home...here are some pointers that might help you guard the ship
#1. What could seem better than rolling out of bed and arriving at your home office. Sounds like an ideal situation saving yourself the hassles of commuting, long distance schleps, dressing up etc. It is advisable not to get carried away in the fairytale air and set aside a workspace as religiously as you would have done while you were physically going to the office. Transition from working part time to working full time from home or a split schedule might not come easy in the beginning but then a designated space will always make the working equation easy. A studio home that doubles up as an office, well equipped with devices and digital connectivity should offer great help. It should save you from the disturbances and homebound distractions and help you stay focused and sharp.
- Invest in a good desk, an ergonomic chair, a small storage where supplies and stuff can be stashed.
- Set aside a space where you have the broad daylight possibly. If that's not feasible invest in good indirect light such as lamps etc.
- Block the noise. If you’re finding it hard to focus because of background noise constantly pulling your attention. Don’t underestimate the soothing potential of a set of soundproof headphones and some white noise...try instrumental!!
#2. It's a win-win situation to stay at home and save a lot of stressful morning rush hours of battling with traffic enroute office, eschewing professional wardrobe etc., resulting in some extra time and money at your disposal that you can spend with/on your family. In given circumstances it becomes all the more necessary to arbitrate balance between family and work. Scheduling your day in an around family without overlooking the work priorities should do the trick. It's prudential to show honesty and integrity when it comes to work because that is what you are being paid for.
#3. Screen sickness after hours of calls, webinars and video conferences that have become the norm of the day might end up being a taxing and tiring affair. Solution might be to restrict your screen time in the latter part of the day and indulging in other productive options sans palmtops and laptops. Scheduling an evening activity suiting best to your liking and switching off the work mode should help.
#4. Humans are social animals. They need interaction with other people. Without a watercooler or coffee breaks to swap jokes, stories, and shop talk around occasionally, telecommuters can get lonely. What seems like blessing can also become a curse in the form of cabin fever. People might lament the fact that the place they work during the day is the exact same place they will be setting later that evening often translating into the fact of spending a huge portion of the day in the same place. If you don't get social interaction at work you need to get it elsewhere. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, it means video calls with friends and family or meeting privately with a friend or two. Consider walks, hikes, or other solo outdoor activities, which offer plenty of ventilation.
#5. Without the structure of the working environment to help you feel like you are in work mode It can be challenging getting into his own difficult to manage with kids, pets, television, couches, snacks and any combination of the above, surrounded by your personal belongings and reminders of chores, it’s hard to focus. Antidote to this could be physically removing yourself into a separate workspace. Also make sure to remove distractions from your work area that you can easily succumb to the likes of TV or books etc.
#6. It is easy to misread cues via electronic communicator. It might come across as a herculean task to get the tone right through digital communication systems such as email chat or text. It can be easy to misconstrue the tonality of someone's message as we are blind without body language facial expression per se. Human beings rely on nonverbal communication when they speak. This problem is so inherent in virtual businesses that an entire industry has sprung up to solve it. Team collaboration and video conferencing tools specifically made to make it easier for companies to stay in touch and stay organized can be availed.
#7. When you never leave the house, even those with inner fire often feel it diminishing quickly. When you’re not surrounded by the career-driven energy of ambitious colleagues every day, it’s all too easy to slip into a rut. Working from home, whether as an entrepreneur or telecommuting employee can make you disappear into your own little cocoon. To avoid this stay involved, relevant and top of the scene in your professional community. Networking remains an essential way to stay relevant for employees and small-business owners alike.
Telecommuting or Work from home comes with a slew of benefits, and with every benefit comes a challenge. Working from home is awesome ... right up until the cat throws up on your computer. amidst a high-profile virtual meeting. Jokes apart, it’s not really about working from home versus working remotely— the key could be blending the two options into an overall package that fits your specific needs. You need to create your own structure and routines. If you want the freedom to work from anywhere, it's wise enough to be prepared for additional responsibilities.