As more and more people are being asked to work from home, we have put together a small guide to surviving what can feel like a big and potentially lonely change.
How to work from home well:
- Take your breaks. When you’re working from home, it’s easy to start early, work through lunch and stay late. But try and be strict about when your working hours are, and be consistent with them.
- Check in with your team via phone or video call at least once a day. Even if it’s just to run through what you’ve all covered and wish each other a lovely evening, it’s always good to check in, and keep those channels of communication open.
- Create a space that you set up for work. Clear away a corner of the kitchen table, or request exclusive use of the living room during work hours. Set up an environment that feels comfortable and productive for you. Even if a space is temporary, the environment that we work in can have a really big impact on our mental health.
- Make an effort to ‘get’ to work – that is leave your work space (even if it’s a walk around the block, to the bottom of the garden, the end of the corridor in your block of flats) and re-enter the space to start work at a given time.
The current safety measures mean you’re likely to find yourself with a bit more free time and a lot less to fill it with. How long does it usually take you to get to work? Half an hour? An hour? Two? I travel an hour to work, and an hour back. Working from home, it’s often helpful to try and keep to your usual routine. Get up, get dressed, make your morning cup of coffee. Then use what would usually be your travel time to exercise, get creative or start learning a new skill.
- Do exercise classes online. If you’re not one for a lone run, do not fear. Plenty of teachers film exercise sessions and make these available free online. Check out Jessamyn Stanley’s yoga sessions, for classes that are without judgement and full of body positivity. Her 30 minute yoga sequence for total beginners is a great place to start: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DkgJ82UVQ7c
- Do something creative. If you like to write, try freewriting exercises. There’s a bunch of useful ones here. If you’re more into visual art, then try and do a sketch a day, even if it’s just of the apple you’ll be having at break time!
- Have you been talking about learning French since you were sixteen? I know I have. Learn a handful of phrases everyday and you’ll be ready to ask for directions to the Louvre and order croissants in no time.
- Start on the pile of books in the corner of your room that only grows every Christmas. Latest reading recommendation: ‘Girl, Woman, Other’ by Bernadine Evaristo
- Learn to sew/ learn to sew better. You could emerge from quarantine with a whole new wardrobe.
This list is far from exhaustive, but hopefully it has given you some ideas to stay active and engaged whilst staying safe, to make the most of your work hours, but also to make the most of your hours in between!
Check out these resources from some of our friends:
This is a live list, which we will be updating. If you have any ideas/ suggestions that you’d like to add to the list, please do get in touch with Amelia on firstname.lastname@example.org