The recent pandemic has pushed a lot of people to work from home. This has a few benefits for most people, including increased productivity, according to a paper from Stanford University. The two-year study found that most of its participants had a 13% increase in performance, providing almost an extra day of output every week. However, the author of this 2013 research paper recently had an interview stating the possible productivity and morale pitfalls of continually working from home.
The reason was that there’s a lack of privacy and choice now. People are staying at home, taking care of their kids, or enduring noise from their roommates in between conference calls. His study also highlighted that most of the remote workers, despite their boost in productivity, chose to go back to the office for social company and collaboration.
His recent findings also saw that the isolation during work from home could cause feelings of depression and anxiety. And whether you like it or not, your mood will always affect your productivity and quality of work. So, how can you boost your mood while doing remote work?
Create a Schedule
When there’s no line between work and home, it feels like you have no control over your own time. You tend to procrastinate more because of a lack of supervision. Plus, you don’t have to worry about your commute, causing you to finish work much later than you should. Your work hours bleed into your personal time, and it just feels demoralizing.
Avoid these issues by creating a schedule, like your regular workday, and stick with it. Wake up an hour or so before your call time to eat breakfast, take a shower, and clear your mind. Set the alarm for lunchtime so that you’re motivated to finish your tasks and reward yourself with delicious food. Make it a point to complete your work before your scheduled quitting time, as if you need to catch the bus after. With a set schedule, you’ll end up with more time to rest, relax, and unwind from the stress of your job.
Establish a Separate Workspace
Now that you have a proper schedule, it’s time to kick it up a notch and create physical boundaries between your home and work. Create a separate workspace that’s free from distractions like your comfortable bed or your gaming console.
Your workspace can be a guest room or just a simple corner in your living room. Decorate it like you would your office desk, with canvas prints of your favorite quote or a picture of a place you aspire to travel to someday to keep you motivated. Once you log out, leave the space and stay away from it for the rest of the day so that there’s complete separation between your work and home life.
Strict deadlines and backlogs can make you miss or delay crucial meals and break times. Try to negotiate submission times for your work to match your schedule or pace. Take breaks when you feel too stressed or tired from work or when it’s time to eat. During your break period, do some calming activities like meditation, walking (even if it’s just around your apartment block), or eating your favorite snack. You’ll come back refreshed and ready to take on the rest of your tasks.
Remote work can be just as mentally tiring as going to the office. Use these suggestions to boost your mood while staying productive. With a set schedule, a separate workspace, and proper self-care practices, you’ll have an easier time separating your work life from your home life.