How are you coping with the working-from-home situation? Are you managing to stay positive and productive?
This new way of working has real potential and can be very positive but it also comes with some challenges. Especially considering that what was supposed to be a few months has now become our new norm.
On top of that, we need to consider that, it can affect you differently depending on your personality or your position.
Research suggests that there are two types of people; segmenters (who like to separate work and personal life) and integrators (who feel content bouncing from one to another).
Even more, we know that depending on your position you will find different challenges. People who supervise teams; managers, team leaders, supervisors; are working longer hours and are having more difficulties when finding a work-life balance.
Whatever your case is, the important thing to remember is that we are all learning, so we can find creative ways to make the working-from-home situation more effective for each one of us.
If you have read our previous posts, you will know how important communication and a healthy company culture are. This situation is just another example of how demonstrating these values can help you, your team, and your company.
We want to share with you some tips on how to make the best of this situation and also some examples of how we do it inside our team.
5 Tips that will help you find the right solution for you
Find out what your needs are and be honest about them
Everyone is different and has different needs, but one thing is true for everyone: The only person who knows what you need is you.
So take some time to think about it: what are you missing, what could help improve your life. If we ask the right questions we will find the right answers.
After that, it is about being honest and talking to your team, your boss, and your family and asking for help whenever you feel you need it.
Remember: We are all living in the same situation so we can empathize with each other even more now, than before.
Create relationships outside of work
Taking into account that we are not only working from home but mostly isolated in it. It is crucial that you make your best effort in creating relationships and having conversations around topics other than work.
Make sure you block out 5 or 10 minutes before or after your meetings to ask how someone is and chew the fat over something other than work.
Organise a video call with your colleagues on a Friday after work or plan Zoom lunches during your day in which you just talk about stuff so that you keep your relationships strong and healthy.
Organise your day
Being organised is critical for everyone who wants to stay productive, and positive. Have an agenda, a schedule, write down your to-dos, your breaks, etc…
Being organised will help you focus therefore you will be more productive.
Take time for yourself
If you are a “segmenter” you are probably already focusing on differentiating work and free time. But probably “integrators” are finding it more difficult or managers are spending more time at work than ever before.
So don’t forget about yourself, make time for things you enjoy.
This is equally important during and after work hours. During your day at work, you can take some breaks to walk around the room, prioritise some stretching exercises or even just go outside for a bit of fresh air.
After work, you also need to have that designated time for yourself. Pick a hobby, something you love, something that makes you feel relaxed, and make sure you stick to it. The physical, mental, and emotional break will do you so much good.
Make work suit your life
One of the benefits of working from home is that we have more freedom. As much as your job allows it, you just have to find the right style for you.
So, don’t be afraid to use this freedom to your benefit.
If you are in a creative role and inspiration finds you better in the afternoon, organise your agenda so you dedicate this time to the more creative activities.
Or pick a time to go for a walk to brainstorm and come up with new ideas, something that just gives you time and space to think. Watch this TED Talk about how walking helps creativity if you need more inspiration to go out in the rain!
We practice what we preach
At Optimist Performance, we take these points very seriously, and we try to implement them on a daily basis. Here are some examples of what we do:
We know our needs and we are honest
We have a morning call every day with the whole team. A few weeks ago, a member of the team mentioned she needed some extra time in the morning to exercise, so we all agreed to have our calls a bit later.
Also, we try to be as flexible as possible. So if someone needs to change the time for our call, we always try to accommodate our agendas together.
We care about relationships
We got together last Friday to have a farewell party for one of our colleagues. We were still looking at our screens but it was nice to talked about something different and got to know each other better.
Maybe these types of relationships are not ideal, but they are still relationships that will accompany you for a long time if you nurture them.
Another member of our team spends the last 15 to 25 minutes everyday organising the next day’s agenda. She writes down everything she has to do, from main projects, to what she wants to mention in the next day’s meeting.
Writing down your thoughts, to-dos, and ideas help bring peace to your mind. Every time you start thinking about work, just say to yourself “everything is on the agenda, I won’t forget it and I will do it tomorrow, so I don’t need to worry now”.
Otherwise, your mind will be reminding you about the same things over and over again, which will make it impossible for you to relax.
We take advantage of our freedom
We sometimes have our morning calls while walking outside. We still get together and talk about what needs to be done, but we enjoy each other’s ‘views’ and it gives us new conversation topics to talk around.
We understand that everyone has different circumstances. Maybe what is possible for us is impossible for a company with 50 people on a call, but the message is the same.
It’s all about being honest, open, empathetic, and being willing to work together.
There are no wrong answers, all this is new and we are in the learning process. But we need to allow ourselves to be creative and have the courage to speak up and be honest.
What you need to remember is that “You are working from home, not living at work”.
We would love to hear from you, leave a comment and tell us what your tips and tricks are.