Like it or not, remote work is here to stay for a lot of people — and for others, that return to office date is going to be TBD for a while longer. Working from home takes some practice. Without external motivators like seeing other human beings (especially your boss!), it can be challenging to stay on task and not lose track of time. Here are a few tips that can help you focus and maintain work-life balance.
1. Set physical boundaries and clear the clutter.
Working from home doesn’t mean working 24/7. Leaving the office at night helps you create closure and shift out of work mindset. When your office is in your dining room or bedroom, how do you signal that you’ve “left”? It’ll take some creativity but can be done.
Even if it adds a couple of minutes to your remote work routine, close your laptop, tidy up your space and (if your office doubles as a living space) put all your work supplies into a bin or drawer until morning. This tells your brain it’s “quitting time.” If putting things away isn’t possible, at least put your computer to sleep.
Similarly, if you can see your breakfast dishes, the kids’ toys and piles of unfolded laundry while you work, focusing on a deck or spreadsheet will be harder than it needs to be. Tidy the spaces within your line of vision to keep your eye on the ball during your workday.
2. Turn on “work focus” mode.
Your phone can help you wind down — and it can also help you stay on track. Tune out distractions (but don’t miss important calls and texts) with “work focus” mode. If you have an iPhone, you can customize which notifications come through when you’re working, to avoid losing time to scrolling, group texts and nonurgent matters (like, say, puppy videos).
When it comes to focus when you’re learning the ins and outs of remote work, nothing zaps it faster than stress and fatigue. Give them both the boot with Good Morning Sunshine™ Coffee + Adaptogens. We infuse smooth, delicious Fair Trade coffee with organic red ginseng extract to help you fight fatigue with more than just caffeine.* Plus, ginseng is an adaptogenic herb, meaning it helps your body naturally manage its stress response.* We think it’s a WFH must-have!
3. Work from a desk.
There are times when working from the couch or your bed is warranted, but if you’re still working from a makeshift set-up, it’s time to upgrade if resources allow it. Not only is a desk better for your focus and productivity, but it’s also better for your body.
Like it or not, most of us spend 40+ hours a week at our desks, whether we’re doing remote work or in the office. You deserve to be comfortable! If buying a desk isn’t an option, at least do what you can to elevate your laptop to eye level, add a lumbar pillow and cushion to your dining chair and get an external mouse for your wrist’s sake!
4. Use timers to stay on track.
There’s no worse feeling than looking at the clock, seeing it’s 5 p.m. and wondering what in the world you did all day! Without the cues of other people, keeping track of time while working from home can be a challenge. Using timers and alarms — either on your phone or a real-deal clock — can help you better manage your time, especially if you’re new to working from home.
The pomodoro technique is a classic approach to dividing your work day into bite-size chunks, but you can manage your time any way that works for you.
Bonus: Every time your timer goes off, get up from your desk and move around. Your brain, energy levels and vascular system will thank you. And, if you’re trying to drink less coffee, more frequent movement can help!
5. Reclaim your “commute.”
You know how most of us aren’t getting enough healthy sleep? Not commuting could be the secret to finding more time in the day. If you’re not getting at least seven hours a night, tack the amount of time you’d spend driving to the office onto your sleep schedule. (We think this is one of the best benefits of remote work — how about you?)
If your challenge is not time but actually falling asleep and staying there, we hear you — and we’ve got you! Hello Dreams™ Sleep Strips with Melatonin and Calm Down™ herbal blend to help you fall asleep, stay asleep or fall back to sleep — and wake up rejuvenated.* Make them part of your bedtime rituals for better sleep tonight and a better day tomorrow!
We wish you a happy and productive 2023, full of better tomorrows and good nights!