This year, many companies made the important decision to shift from in-person to virtual work, requiring major adjustments to daily schedules. One of the main changes for remote workers is that their homes also became offices, gyms, schools, businesses and more.
In the absence of commutes and other distractions, remote workers often find themselves laboring longer than usual. Employers may expect virtual workers to function beyond normal business hours, and it can be difficult to know when to turn work off for the day. Plus, in the new normal — where home has transformed into something beyond a place of rest and relaxation — how is it possible to switch work off to maintain work-life balance?
Here are four tips to help you better manage your day while working remotely.
Create a daily schedule
Begin each day with a plan in mind. By sectioning off your day into various activities, you can better distinguish between your work and personal lives. Dedicate specific hours to work and avoid work-related tasks after hours. Setting boundaries around your work and home lives can help you better manage your schedule and be more productive.
Dress for work
Let your attire define your workday and establish a clear cutoff point. Wear work clothes while working and save your comfortable attire for relaxing after work. This creates the right mindset to get you into work mode and, when it comes time for a virtual video meeting, you’re ready to show up with a professional appearance.
Transition from work to personal
While it may be harder to make the mental shift from work to home without a change in your environment, doing so is important. Pick a task or event to help you transition from work to home activities and set a fixed time to shut off work and start personal time. For example, schedule time to exercise at 5 p.m., or set dinnertime for 6 p.m.
Schedule time to relax
Take a break from the daily stresses of life. Adding fun experiences to your end-of-day schedule can help you unwind and give you something enjoyable and gratifying to look forward to. Increase your outdoor time and engage in physical activities as much as possible to relieve stress, such as riding a bike or going for a walk. Spending time with family or planning a virtual or socially distanced get-together with friends, often increases the feeling of connection and fulfillment.
Balance is the key to a successful experience working from home. During the global pandemic, it’s important to find new ways to adapt while maintaining a pre-coronavirus schedule as much as possible. To prevent exhaustion and burnout, develop habits that bring some sense of normalcy to your daily routine.
Elizabeth Paturi is the digital communications manager for TrainingPros and has been responsible for social media strategies and marketing projects for the firm since 2013. As an innovative and resourceful social media marketing professional who enjoys creativity and ingenuity, Elizabeth thrives in a fast-paced, purpose-driven environment where she can enhance business development. She earned a Bachelor of Science in business administration from The University of Texas in Dallas with an emphasis on management information systems. She now lives in metro Atlanta. When learning leaders have more projects than they have people, TrainingPros can provide the right L&D consultants so they can start their projects with confidence. Visit TrainingPros for more information. TrainingPros is a WBENC-Certified Women's Business Enterprise.