The last six weeks has changed the world like never before. The current crisis has been doing serious damage to small businesses as everyone scrambles to keep things intact and to prepare for what will come after.Until then, however, many entrepreneurs, as well as staffs from all sized companies, have been working from home. This is a decidedly difficult thing to do especially for those who have never done it before. Forbes magazine recently published some research that is a road map of guidelines for those who have never had to work from home before. The following is taken directly from the research published at Forbes:
- Confine your work space to a specific area in your home so your job doesn’t intrude into the lives of other household members and you can concentrate. Have a space that you designate as your workstation instead of checking emails, voicemails or texting in front of TV or spreading work out on the kitchen table. Make your space a stress-free zone of quiet and solitude where you can concentrate. If you don’t have a separate room, find an area with minimum traffic flow or a corner of a room off from the main area.
- Studies show that a delicate blend of soft music combined with soothing nature sounds—such as waterfalls, raindrops, a rushing brook or ocean waves—activates the calming part of your brain, helps you concentrate and lowers heart rate and blood pressure.
- Go to the same designated place on a regular basis so your mind doesn’t wander, you can focus and increase your productivity. Establish water-tight psychological boundaries so you’re not constantly reminded of temptations around you.
- If possible, only go to your designated space when you need to work. Stick to a regular schedule, and keep your work space at arm’s-length after hours. Try to maintain the same hours you log in at the office so you don’t get swallowed up by the workload.
- It’s important to prevent intrusions into your work space by informing others that although the location of your job has changed, it is no different from any other profession requiring privacy and concentration. Notify others that during at-home work hours you’re unavailable and cannot be interrupted. And let them know the after hours when you’re available to connect.
- Avoid cabin fever. Now that you’re spending a disproportionate amount of time at home, get outside as much as possible with gardening or walking around the block. Mounting research shows that spending time in nature lowers stress, helps you relax and clears your mind.
- Keep your attitude in check. Above all, be creative and don’t let your confined circumstances dwarf your tranquility, happiness or productivity. Your greatest power is your perspective. It can victimize you or empower you. Take advantage of this restrictive time to clear clutter out of your basement, pull weeds in the garden or get caught up on fun hobbies you’ve neglected for a while.
-Written by Kevin Sawyer