If you have never worked from home before – it can be a difficult thing to begin. Whilst its great to be working in the comfort of your own home, you still need to get your work done throughout the day like you have been in the office, but how? This is the advice that we follow internally and can be used by any business as a guideline.
The key to be effective when working from home is having a routine. If you usually get up for work in the office at 7am, have a coffee, shower and get dressed, you should continue to do that from your own home.
We wouldn’t expect you to put on a nice suit to work from home (unless you need to dial in and use your webcams..) however, putting on something casual and comfortable is recommended. You should also be working in a well-lit room.
People that work from home for the first time can get into the trap of sleeping in late, not showering and just put on their pyjamas and start working. Subconsciously, your brain will switch off, you will procrastinate and your productivity will decrease. You will become increasingly frustrated and burn yourself out.
Most people fall into the trap of thinking that they need to stay right in front of their computers all day.
During office hours, you probably don’t realise how many short, sharp breaks you have throughout the day. Talking to a workmate about your weekend from across your desk, about the footy on the weekend at the water cooler – these micro-breaks help prevent you from burning out. They separate your work and keep you engaged.
While working from home, taking regular short breaks can help your productivity just like they do in the office. it gives your brain time to relax, refresh and then re-target the task at hand.
Always keep hydrated throughout the day. While at home, you may not notice that you are actually spending more time in front of your computer (because you think you must do it, see taking breaks above).
In most cases, your home does not have air circulation like your office does (which usually does with machines) so it is easy to become dehydrated, tired or lethargic.
Finish at a reasonable time
Just because you are working from home doesn’t mean you should be working all night. Set yourself times to turn off the computer and continue with your day to day life.
Did you usually walk up those stairs to the office but now only walk from your bed to living room when working from home?
Exercise is vital to keep you healthy both physically and mentally. Exercise is proven to reduce cortisol levels, reducing stress.
Sometimes, you just need to recharge – and that’s OK
There are times you just need to disconnect and recharge. If you feel like you can’t get anything else done because you are overwhelmed, frustrated or upset, we want you to put everything down and do something you love instead.
Go for a walk or run. Head to the beach, go for a drive, look at the stars at night – anything that you enjoy should be enjoyed when it is needed.
Watch for signs of mental health issues or burnout
If you are experiencing signs of mental health issues – please seek help. Here are a list of useful resources which are here to help you.
1300 22 4636
beyondblue is a national organisation that has a range of information and resources associated with depression and anxiety. Useful resources and further information about beyondblue programmes are available on its website at www.beyondblue.org.au or by contacting its Support Service on 1300 22 4636. The Support Service runs 24 hours a day, seven days a week. All calls are one-on-one with a trained mental health professional, and completely confidential.
13 11 14
Lifeline Australia provides a confidential and anonymous, 24-hour telephone counselling service for people needing emotional support. Lifeline Australia also has a range of information and resources available from their website, about providing care in times of crisis.
1300 78 99 78
Mensline Australia provides a confidential and anonymous, 24-hour professional telephone counselling service for men needing emotional support or in crisis. Mensline also has a range of information and resources available from their website, about providing support and taking care of yourself, in times of crisis.
Kids Help Line
1800 55 1800
A number of children and youth may also need emotional. Kids Help Line is a confidential, telephone counselling service for 5 to 25 year olds in Australia.
Black Dog Institute
The Black Dog Institute provides a 24 hour mobile phone/computer-based programme to assist those with mild to moderate depression, anxiety and stress (myCompass).