Home Work: Productivity Tips for the Virtual Workplace

2020-11-11

Productivity Tips for the Virtual WorkplaceWorking virtually has become the norm, but that doesn't mean it's gotten easier. Many of us are still struggling to be productive, take time for ourselves, help our kids with online school, and make sure our pets don't crash our work Zoom meetings. So how do you make the most of your day when there seem to be so many things working against you?

Organizing your space:

Research has shown that your environment can have a significant impact on your mood as well as your ability to get things done. Having designated spaces for work and school will help your brain switch into "work mode," and also help you to detach at the end of the day important when it's harder than ever to leave work. You may have to get a little creative, but taking the time to make sure everyone in the house has an inviting and effective workspace is worth the effort.

Here are some tips:

  • At minimum (and if possible), everyone (kids included) should have their own space to work.
  • Clean and organize your workspace.
  • Add green plants, photos, or other small touches to make it feel good.
  • Make the space conducive to the work you need to do, and keep supplies within reach.

Hacking your schedule:

Not everyone works the same way, so experimenting with how you approach your day can really make a difference. Pay attention to your energy and focus levels throughout the day, and schedule your most challenging work for when you're at your best. Consider abandoning your daily to-do list and instead schedule blocks of time to work on important tasks. And don't forget to take breaks! The most productive people make distraction free breaks a priority, and they take them without feeling guilty.

Working with kids at home:

Do you have kids at home who are doing remote learning? Here are some ways to work with them while working at home...

Set boundaries: Making yourself available to answer your child's questions all day, every day is going to make you insane and also set them up for failure. Make sure your child knows when you are free to help, and when they shouldn't disturb you.

Focus on independent learning skills: Teaching your child how to email their teachers and remember their appointments is going to be much easier than teaching them how to solve quadratic equations or compose an essay on Of Mice and Men.

Ask for help: Although teachers are juggling a lot this school year, they are still more than happy to provide individual support to students who need it. Hiring a tutor is also a great way to give yourself a break and make sure your kids get the help they need.

Don't hover: Go ahead and help your kids if they need it, but avoid getting overly-involved with their schooling. This year more than ever, they need you to be their parent.

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