It feels like just yesterday we were told that our workplaces would be closing and that we’d be expected to do all our duties from home. We can all remember the excitement and cautious optimism with which we arranged and decorated our workspaces. We all remember the enjoyment we felt rolling out of bed a half hour earlier without the need to endure the nightmarish Monday morning commute. We all felt like we were going to be so productive. We speculated about how we’d spend all the free time we’d suddenly have.
Yet, several weeks in, the reality is beginning to deviate from the fantasy more and more with each passing day. However, rather than allowing ourselves to worry about it constantly and get more and more stressed with each passing week, let’s instead look at where we’re all going wrong…
Assuming that we’ll be more productive
Right now, you’re probably feeling that the internet has lied to you. It told you that remote workers were more productive. You imagined being able to reduce your working hours within a week, giving yourself way more free time to spend on the things that really matter. But the truth is that while remote workers can be more productive, the data gathered to make that assertion doesn’t really match the reality of living and working under lockdown. It doesn’t factor in the bandwidth and network restrictions when the whole family is online at the same time. It doesn’t factor in the general sense of unease and worry that we’re all feeling. It assumes you won’t be distracted by frustrated kids. It assumes that you already have the perfect setup for working from home rather than trying to make do with what you’ve got. So, if you’re way less productive than you were in your office that’s certainly not a reflection on you or your ability.
Whoever thought we’d miss our bosses standing over us, monitoring our working practices. There are certain bad habits that we can all fall into when left to our own devices. One of the most egregious of which is multitasking. When we’re actually multitasking we may feel as though we’re crushing it… but study after study has shown that there’s really no such thing as multitasking, there’s just doing several things at the same time badly!
In our zeal to get the most out of our working day, we can forget that we’re only human. We can start work at 8am and work long into the night without looking up, much less leaving our chairs. But this can do no favors for our health or our productivity.
Take breaks to rest your mind. Enjoy a herbal tea or some THC vape juice in your breaks. Keep set working hours and stick to them.
Failing to ask for help / guidance
Finally, you may be self-isolating. But you are not an island. The quality of your work will suffer if you don’t reach out to others on your team for help, guidance or support.
When we nip these in the bud, we’ll be able to enjoy happier and more productive working days from home. So we can enjoy all the benefits without the caveats.