Seven tips to stay productive while working from home

Tereza Litsa
Digital Engagement Manager
24 Mar 2020

We’re all adjusting to a new reality that asks us to stay safe and work from home for the foreseeable future. Some of us may have experience in working from home for a day here or there, others are completely new to this. Either way, many of us have found ourselves having to get used to this new ‘normal’.

To help us navigate this time, we asked our sister company Social Misfits Media what works best for them when working from home. Below, Hannah Brennan, Senior Manager at Social Misfits Media, and Tereza Litsa, Social Media and Content Manager at Lightful, share their tips.

Find your routine

It’s easy to be distracted when working from home. It’s also easy to end up working longer hours than your usual schedule. It’s useful to find a routine that helps you maintain a work-life balance. For example, if you like running over lunchtime, you can still stay active over your break. If you prefer to start earlier to rest in the afternoon, you can adjust your schedule accordingly, when possible. (Tereza)

Stay Connected

Use video chats to check in with your team, even if it’s just for a virtual coffee break. Team Social Misfits have been holding virtual company-wide check-ins daily, are having a weekly virtual team lunch, and are having weekly virtual guided meditation sessions (shout if you’d like to join the latter – we’d love you to join us!). Now more than ever it’s important to talk to others (not just about work), decompress, and make sure your colleagues are doing the same too. (Hannah)

Dedicate blocks of time to uninterrupted focus

I find it very useful to add ‘blocks of time’ on my calendar for the tasks that need the biggest focus. It personally helps me to start the day with the most demanding task to make sure I don’t get distracted by other projects. A good way to stay focused is to use the ‘urgent/important matrix’ to plan your week accordingly. Think of the most important and urgent projects and think of what you can push back or even delegate if possible. (Tereza)

Set Boundaries

When you essentially live in your office, it’s easy to overwork and blur the boundaries between work time and home time. Make sure you completely log off when you’re supposed to, otherwise you run the risk of work-life bleeding into home life, both physically and mentally. Similarly, save everyday ‘home life’ things such as television and sitting on the sofa for outside of your working time to help maximise your productivity and help strengthen your work/life boundaries. (Hannah)

Encourage collaboration

There’s no better time to ask for help. Whether it’s an internal project that a colleague can help or external support from others, don’t be afraid to seek support. Luckily, we are working in a sector that many great people are willing to help each other. (Tereza)

Be flexible

These are weird and extenuating circumstances for all of us, so acknowledge and embrace the fact that we’re all in this together, and there are a lot of factors outside of our control right now. For example, if you have a child, don’t stress about them making noise while you’re on calls (we all remember that endearing BBC interview!). We’re all in unique situations and need to be agile, understanding, and supportive of one another in this unprecedented time. (Hannah)

Keep Healthy

Staying in all day can very quickly lead to some unhealthy habits such as snacking and letting that step count go way too low. Consider doing some at-home exercising, such as a virtual yoga class or workout (there are lots of free ones available online). Go for a brisk walk before work or during your break to stop lethargy kicking in and to help keep you feeling refreshed and motivated. (Hannah)

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