How to Stay Productive During Work From Home

Aditi Gupta
3 min readJan 27, 2021

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Coronavirus pandemic has popularised certain new terms like “lockdown”, “physical distancing”, “quarantine”, “asymptomatic”, “isolation” and the most popular one being “work from home”. Whether you like it or not, work from home is the “new normal” and it is here to stay for quite some time. Work from home was hardly in practice pre-pandemic but the world had to make a quick transition. Work from home comes with its perks but it may result in unproductive work days for a few people. Here are some tips that can enhance work from home productivity.

Maintain a Schedule

One of the advantages of working from home is that working hours can be flexible. Although it can fit your personal schedule, there are work meetings and teamwork that need to accommodate everybody. It is advisable to have consistent daily working hours for the week where a proper organised routine can be set. Start your 8 hour working shift at the same time every day with short breaks in between and stick to the schedule.

Work-Life Boundaries

During a typical work from home day, the boundary between work and home becomes hazy. We often have a tendency to lose track of time while working long shifts. It is important to maintain healthy boundaries between work and personal life. You should avoid checking and/or replying to work emails after your shift is completed. You should inform your colleagues about the same so they cooperate and allow you to smoothly maintain these healthy boundaries. Make use of your off days by not concentrating on work. Make it a habit to disconnect from work after work hours and do activities that relax you.

Consider setting up a home office

You do not need to have a home office as a separate room but just a dedicated office space at your home. A clean and tidy workspace with all your essentials that you might need can go a long way in enhancing your productivity. Decluttered desks can help you focus on important things at work without hampering concentration due to distracting elements in the work environment. You can decorate your space by adding some green or your favourite inspirational quote.

Take Regular Short Breaks

Work from home requires staring long hours at screens that can make you tired. Taking short breaks of 5–10 minutes can help rest your eyes. Breaks can be used to move around a get some stretching exercise to relax your body from sitting in one stiff position. Some activities you can do in a short period break time can include the following things: take a stroll or walk your dog, prepare a snack or beverage of your choice, read a paragraph of your current book or meditate, doodle or colour or simply listen to some music. You can also add your break time schedule to your daily planner.

Unwind

We cannot shut our laptops and physically leave office anymore so leaving “work” at “work” is difficult with remote working. At the end of the day, it is important that you relax and get off work. After reviewing your completed tasks of the day and preparing a to-do list for the next day, it is important you end work for the day. With work staying at home, it can often be difficult but what might help is scheduling a daily consistent work end time. To respect the boundaries of your work-personal life and that of others, do not send/reply to emails after work hours. Take some time to spend with family and talk about non-work related things. Log off from work in all aspects after your long hours and get some calmness. You can watch your favourite movie or TV show, go to the gym or do anything that does not require your brain to think about work.

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