Hey there! Working from home is the dream for some, but for others, they were forced into working from home through no desire of their own. Or maybe you’ve been working from home for a while but have had a decline in productivity. No matter which side you fall on, if you work from home you have to create a balance.
How to Create Balance Working From Home
Someone who doesn’t work from home can create this balance easier. Work is at a separate place than home, there is inherent separation. When you work from home it becomes tricky. When you live in an apartment it can be even trickier. Nevertheless, it is important to create that separation and routines to keep that work-life balance.
Continue Your Morning Routines
Just because you’re working from home doesn’t mean you should be getting up at noon and working in your pajamas. You should continue to follow a morning routine to get yourself ready for work or start one if you haven’t already. It doesn’t have to be the exact same, but getting up at a reasonable time, eating a healthy breakfast, and washing your face should be your focus. You really want to make sure you’re setting yourself up for success.
Take an Hour for Yourself
This is something that I think is important, especially to help you wind down after your work. Whatever you use this time for, make sure it’s something relaxing and not related to work. Some examples are:
- Taking a bath
- Reading a book
- Taking a walk
Taking this time for yourself helps your mind relax and stop thinking about work.
Get Dressed for Work
You know how you never seem to want to do work in your pajamas because you’re so comfy and just want to relax? This is why you need to get dressed for work. You don’t have to put your business casual or office clothes on, but at least get out of your pajamas, brush your hair and teeth and get ready for the day.
Have a Separate Place to Work
I know in a small apartment in can seem like there is nowhere to go that is separate, but it’s important to make a distinct workspace and only do your work there. Even if that means using your dining room table and setting it up for work in the morning. If you do use a multi-functional space, make sure you only do work when it is set up to do work and only during your working hours. With the sentiment that you have to be constantly on “the grind”, it’s important to have that separation and honor that boundary. Working from home can feel like it takes over your whole place, this is why you need a dedicated work space.
Don’t work in your bed!
I know it can be as easy as well, I’ll just work on the couch, or in bed. STOP! That was a wake-up call for me in college. I would do my work in bed, even though my dorm had a desk and I would have trouble sleeping. Well, that was one of the things I brought up in counseling and the counselor said it had to do with doing work in bed. Not only is doing your work in bed or on the couch so comfortable that it zaps your productivity, but your brain also thinks that’s the time it needs to be working. Your brain starts to connect your bed/couch with work and so that’s what your brain tries to do!
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Set Working Hours and Honor Them
If your employer doesn’t have set working hours for you, or you’re self-employed, then you need to set them for yourself. This helps you stay in a routine but it also helps create that boundary. Make sure that others in your house know these hours so they know that you’ll be busy during that time. You don’t have to set a 9-5, but if you have a chunk of free time, then make those your working hours. You can even have two chunks of working hours if your job allows for that. Make sure you do what’s best for you and that you stick to those working hours.
If you’re planning on working from home for a long period of time, it’s imperative that you create this balance from the beginning. It can be hard to try and implement a balance after the fact. If you start right from the beginning, you’ll stay on the right track. If you’ve been working from home for a while and noticed you’re not keeping up with some of these, then it may be time to switch things up. Creating this balance will help you have a healthy home life and will help your mental health when working from home.