Trying to suddenly figure out how to work from home with kids and pets? Here’s a crash course on how to work remotely effectively.
Most of us suddenly find ourselves finagling at home work stations. The kitchen table, the coffee table, or a cheap desk from Ikea. I even saw a picture of someone balancing their laptop on a clothes drying rack for a make-shift standing desk. Not many are prepared to suddenly work remotely.
Let’s not forget everyone’s in a unique situation too. Maybe you share a one bedroom apartment with your partner, who’s also suddenly working from home. Or the kids are on Spring Break and their camp was cancelled so now you need to entertain them.
We’ve all seen the work from home tips circulating, but here’s our take on how to juggle the current situation.
1. Lock your computer so your toddler can’t type gibberish in Slack channels
Children are curious. Is your at home work station in a private space they can’t access it? Is the office equipment safely mounted so they can’t pull at wires and knock things down? Make sure to protect them and yourself to avoid any mishaps.
2. Take turns caring for each other as normal work hours are thrown out the window
Working from home now with schools closing means daily routines are going to need to change. It’s okay to ask your partner or family for support. Alternate who’s turn it is to cook dinner. Stagger lunch breaks. Remember small gestures go a long way. Communicate.
3. Establish a new walking routine for your dog so they aren’t confused
Everyone’s pets right now are probably so confused as to why they can’t get their 8 hour naps in everyday. Make sure you maintain some type of routine with them so they know it’s not playtime all day long.
4. Moderate snacking
Who else finds themselves heading to the kitchen more because it’s so close by? This is a tough one, but maintaining healthy eating habits is important for physical and mental functionality.
5. Remember to eat
On the flip side, who finds themself forgetting to eat altogether? It’s easy to get absorbed into your work at home when there aren’t the normal office distractions. Set an alarm to take a lunch break.
6. Define a new work-life balance that works for YOUR family
Let’s recognize we all have different at home environments. And each family has different daily needs. Sticking to the traditional 9 to 5 isn’t going to work for everyone right now. Figure out what works for your situation and ensure to communicate that with your employer.
7. Leave your house, while adhering to social distancing
Get fresh air! Being cooped up in the house all day isn’t good for anyone. Think about it. By physically going into an office, you get to go outside, to your car and around your building. It’s something you’re used to. Make sure to breathe in the outdoors, while still practicing social distancing at least 6 feet apart from each other.
8. Do household chores throughout the day
At the office everyone gets their morning coffee or chats for a few minutes at someone’s desk. Those breaks are important throughout the business day. At home they can be replaced with starting a load of wash or running the vacuum.
9. Don’t glue yourself to your computer
Some people find working from home they have more to prove because we can’t see each other working, so they end up putting in more time daily than in the office. These are unique times and we still need to be functional humans. Take a break. Give your eyes a rest from the screen.
10. Separate work life from home life
It’s crucial to separate the two right now. Find the will to turn your mind off from work. Spend time with your family. Pick up a new hobby or start a craft. Whatever it is, find a way to 100% check out from work each day. Mental health is more important than ever.