MY SECRET TO WORKING REMOTE
The dream for some of us has come true, we've been forced to work from home!!
Now, not everyone is a fan of working remotely for reasons that they are concerned about being in the right environment, being able to concentrate, and having everything you need. For a lot of jobs, as long as you have wifi and a computer- you're all set! My job happens to be one of those and I have been blessed to have this luxury of working from my home and still having work to do.
I have been working from home since March now, and I personally DO NOT want to return to the office on a full week schedule. I have come to find a lot of pros and some cons that have formed my opinion. Everyone has a different atmosphere at home but mine has come together quite nicely and has kept me productive. Depending on where you live and what you do or your commute- can shape your opinion on working from home. Office atmosphere and socialization can also change your perspective.
Pros of working from home!
There is no more commute
This is my personal favorite! I work in NYC yet I live in the suburbs of Jersey. That being said I take 2 trains to get there and walk about 5 blocks.
Yes, if you're wondering the winters are brutal. I am not a cold weather gal.
Not having to commute about 2-3hours a day gives me that time back for me and my life. You get time back to do things you love vs sitting in traffic or on a train. You have time with your loved ones, your family, or your friends now. Dinner plans? Heck YEAH! Ladies night? Heck YEAH! Date night? HECK YEAH! Family game night?! YOU BET! Some things that weren't possible are now feasible given being at home. Dinner before 8PM!? even more of a HECK YEAH!
It's funny how so much gets taken for granted when you start commuting to a job. Not only do you spend 8/9 maybe up to 11/12 hours working, but now tack on at least 2 hours for commuting - Your whole day is shot.
QUALITY OF LIFE!
Boom baby, I'm back!
Unfortunately depending on your hours- work sucks the life out of you. Quite literally it changes our quality of life and drains us to the point that we sacrifice other things we love. Maybe we don't have time to cook an amazing dinner that makes you proud, maybe you don't get much family time, maybe you don't get to take part in your hobbies, or maybe you just feel like you don't get to see your friends or even your significant other.
One thing I have noticed to the extreme is the comfort of being home and having a quality of life back. Yes, I can work late hours but I have more flexibility to do other things, get cleaning done, go to the gym, and make dinner more often. I'm present with my little fam more and I have more energy after work! This is enough for me to weight working from home as a win.
It can seem silly, how can one be more productive at home vs the office? WELL, I will agree that everyone has days lacking motivation or desire to work more so at home than the office. However, I also have noticed that being home allows me to get to my office in 30 seconds vs over an hour. I'm on time everyday, I'm more likely to be early, and I can work more efficiently. If I need to work later, I don't have to worry about missing a train or finding a car service.
Creating my own office space also gives me the upper hand in being in an environment to be more productive. It allows me to have my own desk with whatever pictures or books I like to surround myself with vs the hot seating atmosphere at my job. Not one I'm personally very fond of. It also gives me the freedom to work in whatever conditions I am best working in, whether that is playing music or simply being comfortable in the winter.
Now, I can't say that all these pros are seen day to day but I see it enough to outweigh the cons. Some may need work socialization or being in an atmosphere where you can have direct contact with your team. Those are imperative pieces of the puzzle but for me, they are things I can work without. NOT everyone is suited to work from home and not everyday is easy.
Here are a few ways to successfully work from home!
CREATE YOUR WORK SPACE
This is the absolute most important factor in a successful work environment at home. Having a designated space for work helps improve your mindset when you're at home. Your body and your head understand when you come to this desk- it means it's time to get to it.
If you work from your bed or the couch- you start to confuse yourself with the different rooms and environments. Your brain starts to confuse your place of rest with your place of work. You want to keep these SEPARATE because of this. I can always see a difference in my productivity when I sit at my desk.
Yes, there are definitely days that working from the couch or even my bed happens. I promise you will notice a difference, but sometimes it is much needed. Having the option gives you the most flexible and successful work environment.
This might be one of the hardest aspects of working from home- motivation. It is difficult to be motivated everyday even going into an office- being at home can be even worse. When you are by yourself, you are your support system in a sense. You don't have physical accountability like you do at the office.
You need to find ways to keep yourself motivated! Are you heading toward a goal? Wanting a promotion? Are there certain aspects of your job that you love? Find little things that can keep that spark for your job. You can get too comfortable at home and if you don't have that mindset it can result in bad quality work.
Not being physically present makes it harder to communicate with each other- however, it is absolutely necessary to communicate just the same. You need to have clear direction with your team, ask the same amount of questions- if not more- to make sure you all are on the same page, and you need to have the same relationship with your coworkers virtually.
It is harder to understand or learn certain tasks or responsibilities virtually so, communication is IMPERATIVE to a successful work from home environment. Everything can be taken differently to different people, make sure your communication is clear so there are less misunderstandings. You can't sit and show someone what to do or how to fix something- so you need to be able to communicate very detailed what is expected.
Another factor into your work from home space is the environment. How your work space looks can often effect your productivity. If you are working from a messy room or a messy desk, it is naturally going to make you feel more stressed or cluttered or even less productive.
You need to focus on a clean and positive environment. This means keeping yourself organized and making sure your desk space is motivating you not putting you in a bad mood. You need to make sure you are in a space that gives you tons of light and especially natural light if possible.
When your space is clear, your mind is clear! Additional stress from home can and will carry into your work if you let it. Distinguish your environment and make your office space (even if it's just a desk in your living room) helpful to your mind and your mood.
Until Next Time,