Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, plenty of companies shifted to a work-from-home setup. If you’re one of the lucky people who are still able to work during these times and at the safety of your own home. You’d know that the biggest challenge with working from home is separating work life from home life.
Anxiety caused by the pandemic and being at home is making it difficult to be productive with work. Unlike before, we had offices to commute to or coffee shops to stay in. A separate place where we could focus on work. But now that we’re forced to stay at home, the lines between home and work life are becoming blurred. You either get zero work done, or you don’t get any rest. That is if you don’t know how to create boundaries between the two. If you’re having trouble doing so, don’t worry, we’ve created a guide to help you separate work from home.
Have a routine schedule
Healthcare experts stress the importance of having a routine during the pandemic. Humans are creatures of habit. We need to have a routine. Before the pandemic hit, our routine would include the usual commute, work, go home, and rest. We had a routine because we were on other people’s time. Now that we’re all at home, we’re all working on our own time. No one is forcing us to go to work. As long as we meet deadlines, they won’t tell us what to do.
If your company isn’t setting your work hours for you, create your own. Make it easy and stick to your usual working hours pre-pandemic. Be strict with your working hours. If it’s time to work, then it’s time to work. At the same time, if it’s time to rest, learn to step back from your work and get some rest. Spend time with your family, take advantage of the time you’re given to rest. If you stick to a routine, you’ll find coping with the work-from-home setup much easier.
Have a designated workspace
Let’s be honest. You can’t get work done if you’re doing it on your bed. You need to create a physical separation between your work and home life. “How can you do that when you’re stuck at home,” you may ask? Depending on what’s available to you, there are plenty of ways you can do so. If you live in a small studio apartment, you don’t have that much space. Having a designated area in your studio where you can work that isn’t your bed is good enough.
Practice leaving your laptop and work things in your designated workspace. That way, you create a physical boundary between work and rest. If you’re living in a house and have more space, why not convert one of your rooms into an office? You could also convert something as small as a closet or your kitchen pantry into one. You could even get yourself a backyard cabin. There are plenty of options available. It all depends on what’s accessible to you and your lifestyle.
Create boundaries with your employers or employees
Aside from creating physical boundaries at home. You should also make boundaries with people. Some people think that because we’re all working from home that it’s a green light to contact you at any time. Don’t let this happen, even if they are in charge. Communicate openly and respectfully to your employers or employees about your work time. Let them know that you won’t be available at certain times and stick to your word. If you have clients messaging you during your off times, learn to ignore it. (Unless it’s urgent, of course.)
It only takes these three simple ways to create boundaries between work and home. If you stick to a strict routine, you’ll find coping with work-from-home to be much easier. Remember, rest is just as important as work. Just because you’re working from home doesn’t mean you should overwork yourself. Take advantage of the extra time you have to do what you want instead of stressing yourself out with more work. If there’s anything this pandemic has taught us, it’s that we should make the most of what we have. We’ll never know when it can all end.