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Working from home- achieving the balance

Posted: 14th April 2020

Working from home is a new experience for many of the Allstaff team. However, this is a very different experience even for those who have done it before.

It is fair to say that this is working from home with a difference. We are navigating this uncertain time while trying to homeschool, work from home alongside other family members, not to mention worrying about the future and missing friends and family we are apart from. Most people will be experiencing ups and downs, some days will seem harder than others. So, what are the Allstaff Team doing that is helping them? How are they trying to achieve the balance between work and home life? How are they looking after their personal wellbeing?

We recently asked the team some questions about how they were adjusting and here are some of their best tips…

Remember you are part of a team

It can feel lonely working from home, especially if you like the buzz of the office. One of the most important tips the team gave was to remember that even though we are working from home, we are still part of a great team. Schedule daily or weekly catch-ups. Pick up the phone or video call a team member if you are having an issue or you want to bounce ideas off each other.

Set a routine

Set an alarm, get dressed, make a cup of tea or coffee and set regular breaks for yourself. If you live in a household with others discuss your plan (and theirs) and then write it down so everyone knows. If everybody knows the plan then you are less likely to face interruptions.

Create a workspace

If space allows, create an area where you can focus on work. Ideally, this will be away from where you relax and will have plenty of natural daylight.

Take your breaks and set a finish time

Think about how many times your day is broken up in the office. Chatting to colleagues, making tea, meetings etc, so don’t forget to take breaks at home. Research has found that short breaks throughout the day are more beneficial than less frequent, longer breaks. 

Try to be disciplined, set goals between your breaks and try to achieve them. In the office, you have set days and a finish time. Where possible try to stick to this. When you have finished turn off your computer and leave your workspace or if you don’t have a workspace tidy away your work items. Try not to be tempted to check and respond to emails at all time- creating boundaries should help achieve the balance.

Try and get outside every day

Exercise. Use your lunch break to go for a walk or if that is not possible, open your window to get some fresh air.

Limit your news intake

Be cautious about your news intake or at least the places you get your news. The internet is very noisy at the moment so consider the amount and type of articles you are reading about the current situation.

Get your admin up to date

If you do find yourself with a bit of additional work time. Clear out inboxes, organise files, get on top of those jobs that are always on your to-do list.

Share helpful tips with your team

At Allstaff we have all shared ideas that are helping us. It may be business-related with ideas to help us be more productive at home or improve our knowledge. However equally, as important we are sharing wellbeing tips. Some of the best tips have been podcasts we are enjoying, limiting social media time, book recommendations and helpful apps such as Headspace.

Be kind to yourself

Lastly but importantly be kind to yourself. Working from home does not normally come with all this additional stress and worry. Be patient with yourself. Try not to worry if your child runs in while you are on a Team meeting. If you are having a hard day because you are missing a family member or you are going stir crazy, be kind to yourself- your colleagues are all going through similar things so remember to reach out.

We hope some of these tips help you.

What is working for you and your team? We would love to know!