Tips for Remote Workers
by Amanda Krueger
Many of us have unexpectedly become long-term remote workers. Make the most of your new arrangement with these helpful tips:
Set the Stage
Take some time to consider potential workspaces in your home. While you may already have an area set aside, it’s not too late to switch things up.
Where is the best place for privacy with natural light and a neutral background for video calls? Don’t rule out a quiet spot in a sunny hallway, a corner in your bedroom, or even a breakfast nook.
Once your location is decided, make it comfortable! Find a supportive chair and a small lamp. Add a bit of cheer with a framed picture, a candle, or flowers. The little things can make a great deal of difference!
Maintain a Routine
As creatures of habit, a routine is essential in creating both comfort and efficiency.
Designate your working hours and stick to them—don’t pick up your phone after hours. As we’ve welcomed our work into our homes, we need to learn to draw a line between personal and work time.
For those with children at home, teaching them your routine and sticking to it is important. Develop a system for your family that makes the most sense. Perhaps a posted schedule on the refrigerator with reading time, outside time, and screen time works best.
One of the most awkward things in transitioning from the office to working from home is setting family boundaries. Our spouses and children may not understand just how demanding our jobs are or what time of the day is best for an interruption.
Have an honest conversation with any adults in the house about your preferences to avoid frustration.
For children, a closed door can help signify focused work time when you shouldn’t be interrupted. Setting expectations throughout the day can also be a great reminder for little ones. “Mommy is going to be on a video call. You may come in quietly, but no talking, please.”
Without the customary chit chat of our office environment or the regular walks to the kitchen for snacks, we tend to spend more time glued to the screen.
Set a reminder to get up and walk around for a few minutes each hour. This will greatly reduce eye strain as well as neck and shoulder pain.
Take in those blooming flowers outside, enjoy a five-minute yoga session, or give your pet a tummy rub.
Working remotely can be quite an adjustment when it comes to communication. Some of us do better with face-to-face conversations. If you feel something has been miscommunicated, you can save a chunk of time by reaching out with a video call.
We often learn so much through body language and tone as opposed to a lengthy email chain. Don’t be afraid to reach out!
May your next few weeks of remote work be even more efficient and prosperous with these tips in mind!