Work From Home Diary: 10 ways to keep Remote Work Sane
By Hani Khan
Day 7 - Tuesday, March 24Week 2, Day 2...and not going to lie, i’m getting cabin fever. Sometimes I feel like Ariel from Little Mermaid ‘I want to be where the people are…’ but everyone is indoors (or they should be!). Like many people around the nation, I’ve been practicing social distancing which means no brunches, no hikes and most importantly, no cuddles with my precious 2 month old niece. In the midst of all this - phone calls, virtual hangouts and communication apps have become vital to keep in touch with loved ones and friends. Having previously worked from home full-time at another job, I’ve learned how to balance the freedom and flexibility of being in my own space with keeping my productivity high. Sometimes, it turns into a struggle and can take a toll on your mental well being especially when you’re under a shelter in place and can’t partake in any social activities.
Here are 10 ways to remain sane while working from home:
As mentioned yesterday, productivity suites are great for workplace collaboration across departments. Instead of emailing back and forth, it's easier to come together on a collaboration tool to review and edit documents live.
Department updates:Gossip and rumors can sometimes drive a person insane especially when it comes to worklife and in this time of uncertainty. By providing departmental updates, you’re keeping employees up to date on what’s going on and transparency is key.
Ask me Anything Town Halls:A company wide forum that addresses employees' questions, fears and concerns is a great way for leadership to build trust within the company. When leadership takes the time to speak candidly and transparently with employees, it helps to build a culture of engagement.
Single Source, definitive source of truth:Where possible, companies should have a single intranet for critical organization-wide news, updates, and policies. As information becomes relevant only for a given location or team, the intranet should still be the place for important updates (the stuff you don’t want lost in email), and that information should be smartly targeted to the affected subset.
Virtual Happy Hours:Oftentimes, remote work conversations with coworkers revolve around work. Take the opportunity to host a fun, chill team get together to catch up on each other's activities and build that personal connection. Sometimes that can trigger a creative spark and give you insights on a different perspective.
Work Hard, Play Hard:
After working hard all day, take time to recenter and do a fun activity (indoors of course) whether that’s catching up on a show, reading a good book or even a facetime with friends. It’s important to return to work mode with a refreshed, relaxed state of mind so you’re ready to tackle the next task.
Exercise:Walking from the bed to the desk does not count as a physical activity but that could be the most movement we get while being at home. Instead, choose a physical activity that you’re interested in and move for 20-30 minutes per day. We all know that exercise releases endorphins and makes us happy - we need more happiness right now!
Learn a new skill:Keep yourself and your brain active by learning something new. As we get older, we tend to get stuck in the same routines and forget to stimulate our mind. Allow yourself to recharge and learn something new that can help you.
Schedule breaks and lunch:It can be very easy to get caught up in working through lunch especially when you’re in the comfort of your home but take the time to schedule breaks and meal time. Eat meals away from your desk and use that time to recharge before you get back to work.
Don’t sit all day:The easiest thing we can do all day is get up and stretch to make ourselves feel good. By incorporating this into the day - we’re keeping ourselves from overworking by building breaks into the day.