Having a flexible schedule is one of the greatest perks of working remotely. However, it can also be quite challenging, especially when it comes to creating a balance between work and personal life.
This is something many are discovering during the current pandemic, as more have been working from home. While some seem to fare well, others are having a hard time adjusting to the new setup.
They sometimes find themselves working additional hours and forgetting about the other priorities at home. Others find themselves struggling with distractions as they try to finish deadlines.
This is all because they don’t have a good work-life balance. If you go through this, you’ll likely end up stressed and burned out in no time!
But don’t lose hope! There are still many ways that you can achieve a positive work-life balance.
In fact, we’re here to give you some of them. Here are some tips for maintaining work productivity and organising personal life at the same time.
1. Do your usual morning routine
When working from home, some people tend to go straight to work right after they wake up. Not a good idea! It may seem like you can finish everything on time if you start early but it doesn’t always work that way.
Doing your usual morning routine can help you mentally prepare for all the tasks lined up for the whole day. Take a shower first and get dressed: you don’t have to wear a formal suit but don’t stay in your bedtime clothes either.
Dress in clothes that you’ll typically wear outside of your home. In this way, you can have a definite work mindset.
It’s also advisable to eat your breakfast before you start your work. It can be of help both physically and mentally.
First, the physical aspect of it. We’ve talked with the specialists at Gastroenterologist Singapore and they said that breakfast provides the nutrition that the body needs for a long day ahead. Without it, your body can feel “sapped” or emptied of fuel even before you start working.
The gastroenterologists also told us that skipping morning meals may lead to potential digestive problems, chronic stress, and other health issues. That’s why they highly advise eating a healthy breakfast meal before going to work.
Add to this the mental effects of having a proper breakfast. A good breakfast can put you in the right mood to tackle your work, besides also serving as a “signal” to the brain that you’ve awoken, refuelled, and are prepared for the rest of the day.
2. Create a designated workspace
As mentioned earlier, distractions are inevitable when you work from home. You might be tempted to binge-watch your favourite series or finish laundry tasks instead of working.
That’s why it’s important to build a separate space at home where you can fully focus on your work tasks. Treat it like an office, even if it’s a small area — as long as you can avoid distractions and dedicate your time to work, then it’s fine.
Also, make sure that your family and other household members understand your work setup and respect your space. That way, you can freely work on your schedule without any guilt and without anyone interrupting you.
3. Set a work schedule
It can be a bit hard to set a specific schedule, especially when you have a lot of work to finish and priorities outside of work to fulfill.
But without an inclusive schedule, you can easily get lost throughout the day. So, you should always try to allot a certain period of time to each task.
This will be a trial-and-error process as everyone has their own responsibilities and lifestyle. It might take you a long time to find the right setup, but it will happen.
You can start by listing all of your tasks and identifying which one must be done first. Then set a time for each one so you know when to start and stop.
You’ll feel great as you cross off each task on your list, helping you have positive progress. Think of your home as a real work environment once your schedule starts so you can be less tempted to procrastinate and be more productive.
4. Take short breaks
As you build your schedule, make sure to add your lunch breaks or exercise time. If you continue to do your work without eating anything or taking a break, you might end up submitting a project full of errors — or worse, may do lasting damage to your health.
For example, according to the team at Eye Specialist Singapore, spending extensive hours in front of your desktop/laptop may lead to eye strain or even long-term vision problems. It’s just not normal to stare at a single computer screen for that long!
So, take short breaks in between, have a proper meal, take a walk, and do some simple exercises like 15-minute stretching. It can help you break up the monotony and spare you medical issues later on.
This will help reduce the stress and pressure and lift up your mood so you can go back to work with positive energy.
5. Give yourself time to relax and unwind
Finally, remember that staying at home, doing work and household chores, taking care of kids, and running errands can cause you to neglect the personal time that you must have for yourself.
So, it’s essential to include self-care in your schedule.
Make plans with your family and friends or go to a workout class, whichever it is that makes you happy and feel relaxed. Schedule relaxation times or leisure moments on your own if you like.
Do it for yourself so you can have better mental health. After all, achieving a work-life balance means not letting duties take over entirely — it means making sure they neither overwhelm nor get overshadowed by the other parts of your life.