I wrote my last working from home post before working from home became a permanent fixture in most of our lives. Now most of us have got used to the aspects of working from home, we are trying to navigate our own work from home routine.
I used to work from home a minimum of one day a week for the past 3 years and more permanently these days. Now I’ve got used to it on a full time basis, this year I’ve been carving out a whole new work from home routine.
How to find the best work from home routine for you
Add a commute to your morning
Hear me out. One of the biggest benefits for working from home is no 6am commute. But the commute is often vilified, when actually it’s a great divide between work and home life. And since working from home on a permanent basis, I noticed the lines beginning to blur.
My ‘commute’ routine involves waking up in the morning, with plenty of time to get ready and moving to a different room to have coffee, breakfast and do some reading, stretching or listen to some music before I head to my home office.
The smaller your home working space, the harder this may be but it’s not impossible. You could make the time to go for a short walk, fit some exercise in or grabbing a coffee to go before signing on for the day.
Plan your routine around your energy levels
I’m now pretty familiar with my day to day energy levels and plan my day accordingly. Like so:
- 9.00-10.00am- peak email reading time. I’m still adjusting to being awake, and I’m planning for the day ahead
- 10.00-12.00- perfect for meetings, I’ve got more energy, I’m more sociable and I’ve got my to do list in hand
- 12.00-1.00pm- break time, I eat, I go for a walk or do something to unwind like watch tv or read
- 1.00-4.00pm- perfect time to get reports done, call clients and I’m fully focused after having a break
- 4.00-5.00pm- I wind down, I get my to do list ready for the next day and finalise any admin
This doesn’t always fit in with events happening that day but what I can control, tends to look like this.
Take plenty of breaks
I will say this till I’m blue in the face: resting is productive. In the real office, you wouldn’t be chained to your desk 24/7, so don’t do it at home.
I make sure to spend a good amount of time away from my desk either by either going to another room or getting fresh air and going for a walk.
Schedule time to socialise with your colleagues
Arrange a virtual coffee with your team or clients. Perhaps if other people in your bubble are also working from home, why not make the time to socialise with them. One of the biggest thing people tend to miss working from home is the social atmosphere of the office, so try to recreate it at home is that’s what is missing in your daily routine.
Create a working atmosphere
Whatever your home set up looks like, make it well organised with plenty of personal touches and lack of distractions. I like some background music or a podcast to help me focus.
Give your work from home routine an ending
Give your work routine, a beginning, a middle and most importantly an end. Do whatever signifies to you that the day is done. Personally I close off everything and I spend some time tidying up and organising my desk for the next day. That way I don’t have to do it before I start the next morning, making plenty of time do other things and this symbolises for me, the end of my day.
What does your work from home routine look like?