One of the perks of working from home is having no commute and no traffic. We gain extra time each morning and evening and we avoid the stress of travelling. What’s not to love!
The Benefits of “Commuting” while Working from Home
Our daily commute to work does, in fact, have benefits that many people are now missing. The commute helps us separate our home lives from our work lives.
For many the biggest challenge of working from home is the blurring of the lines. Minutes after you finish your breakfast you may have to solve a challenging work problem. The transition is too sudden. It can be hard to switch into gear.
In this blog, we will look at how to gain back the benefit of commuting so you can optimise your time working from home.
1. Daily Routine
The first thing is to develop a routine. Aim to start and finish work at approximately the same time every day. This sets the boundaries in your own mind but also for other family members in your house.
The routine takes away the thinking and decision making. You will automatically start the same way every day. So on a day that your motivation is low, which happens us all occasionally, you will still start the day the same way.
This gives you a greater chance of enhancing your productivity and motivation levels. You can “work yourself” into a productive mood.
2. Commute to Work
Identify an activity that helps you transition into work mode. This will be your “commute” to work. This could be:
- A quick walk around the block
- An exercise routine
- Reading a business article for 10 minutes
Find an activity that works for you. This will help you sharpen your focus while you park any personal thoughts or tasks.
3. Commute Home
It is equally important to “commute home” from work in the evening. This helps you switch off and be more “present” away from work. Set a finish time and try to stick to it. There may be an occasional day where you need to work longer but make this the exception.
Identify an activity to help you clear work thoughts from your mind. This could be:
- Planning the next day
- Committing to a family activity
- Taking some exercise or enjoying some personal down time
You may be tempted to read emails after hours, particularly if your workspace or devices are visible. Try not to let it become a habit. Working in the evening can impact your ability to be productive the following day. To avoid the temptation, keep your devices out of sight so that work stays out of mind.
The Challenge of the Winter Months
It can be hard to stay motivated during the winter months as the days get shorter and darker. My tip is to focus on what you can do rather than what you can’t do. Sometimes all we need is a mindset shift.
It is not as pleasant to exercise in the dark and cold but we can still do it. One of the ways to stay motivated is to track your habit each day. If you get on a “streak” you won’t want to miss a day. It worked for me last night when I was motivated to do my daily walk in the wind and rain just so I could tick the box!
Get Things Done and Stay Motivated
Getting things done, no matter how small those things are, can really boost our mood. That feeling of productivity motivates us to keep going. It also helps to reduce stress, which is important right now.
Photo: Karolina Grabowska, Pexels.
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Author: Moira Dunne, Olas Training Associate.