Over time I have experienced lots of different work patterns. In the past I have worked full time office hours, flexible hours, several jobs at once and night shifts. But Covid has introduced working from home as an acceptable part of a normal working pattern. Although I teach face-to-face part time, I still manage to have some time at home doing my other work, such as freelance writing.
Lots of my friends include managers and researchers and they have really got used to working from home. So much so that they have opted to carry it on in preference to returning to the office.
Personally, I hope to work at least two full days from home after the summer and I am really looking forward to it. I have gathered together some advice for people who are new to this kind of work and listed them below:
Working at home – Suggestions
– All of my friends agree that getting rid of distractions is vital when setting up a home based office. Here is a previous article about this, Working from home – without distraction. Such distractions include family members, pets and neighbours popping round for tea.
– Having the right equipment matters. That includes back supports for any chairs you sit on. Also it is vital that you get an anti-blue light screen protector that minimises glare, helping you to look after your eyes. This will also stop them getting tired so quickly.
– Make time for physical breaks. Not travelling to work is great for the environment but often it is easy to become quite sedentary. Time can also run away from you so make sure you rigidly set times for breaks and chances to be mobile.
Some easy ways to mobilise include:
a) Take the dog for a quick walk (he/she will thank you for it).
b) Do ten squats. These are great for getting the blood flowing and wake up your glutes as well as keeping you alert.
c) Walk up and down the stairs twice. Perhaps even treat yourself with a glass of water at the end of it.
d) Do a home maintenance task for five minutes. This helps in two ways as it gives your back and eyes a rest as well as contributing to those chores that will otherwise build up throughout the day. Good examples are: fill the dishwasher, take the bins out, dust the window sills or wipe the kitchen surfaces.
e) Close your eyes and lay on your back, doing alternate leg raises. This will give your abdomen a simple workout whilst allowing you to let your eyes relax for a few minutes. Three lots of ten leg raises work wonders.
– Make sure that if you have a visible timetable online, you pencil out a block everyday for admin tasks. If you don’t then colleagues won’t resist booking you in for back-to-back meetings all day long.
If you manage your time well and don’t get sucked into too many unnecessary meetings, you will still have time for exercise and reflection at the end of the day. Without the need to commute, you should have a little bit of ME-time to unwind, get fresh air and maybe even read a book.
Hopefully this advice was quite useful. For similar posts about lifestyle and entertainment, perhaps consider following my little blog.