A participant on one of our online workshops recently asked me a great question, she asked ‘What in my experience, was the hardest thing about working from home?’
Without hesitation I was able to say, that for me, the hardest thing about working from home was finding my rhythm. By this, I mean finding my methods and processes to help me be at my best.
My happy place…(and no that is not a picture of my home working space!)
One of the first things I had to do was ensure my home working space was set up to help me be productive.
A good desk, comfortable chair, natural lighting and access to all of the bits I need for my role. Having a door really helps when having to shut out distractions. Having somewhere I looked forward to going to in the morning and where I could comfortably spend 7+ hours was vital.
Not everyone has an available spare room and being creative with the space you do have can work miracles too!
Without my routine I would be lost!
My ‘Mindset Ready for Work’ routine normally starts the night before. I will spend some time thinking about my goals for tomorrow. I am also one of those people that needs to have a notebook by my bed as I have been known to have eureka moments at 4am! And getting solutions to problems and new ideas out of my head and on to paper helps to calm my mind and enables me to get back to sleep. It also means I have notes ready prepared for when I am in the right frame of mind to analyse the value of the idea and the necessary actions.
I’m also an early riser. When I first started, I would normally reach for the laptop or phone and start working in bed. This habit was not good for me and something I had to nip in the bud as early as possible!
Now I typically get up at 6am, get showered, shaved, have a decent breakfast (I have re-discovered my love of porridge and fruit!), some exercise (either a run or calisthenics) and at my desk for 8am.
I always try to force myself to have an hour for lunch. This helps me re-charge for the afternoon. If I can I will get outside and I really notice a difference in my productivity in the afternoon if I skip a lunchtime adventure or miss lunch.
In the evening, it is so important for me to shutdown the laptop and close the door on my home working space. This allows me to spend time with loved ones and come back the following day feeling refreshed and raring to go.
This visual from The Fab Story sums all of this up perfectly...
It does get easier, and you and everyone in your house will find their rhythm too!