The New Normal: Staying Productive While Working Remotely

The work-from-home setup has become a trend among many companies for years. But some businesses were skeptical in jumping on to the bandwagon due to the nature of their work. In 2020, however, most organizations didn’t have a choice but to switch to remote working. A Stanford University economist survey shows 42 percent of the US labor forces are now working from home full time. Experts expect the work-from-home economy to continue even when the pandemic subsides.

Working remotely offers several advantages to businesses and employees. For example, you can save time and money by eliminating your daily commute. While some workers report being productive when they work from home, others struggle to adapt to this new setting. According to the survey, 35 percent of the participants have poor to no internet at home, making telecommuting less effective. Not all remote workers also have enough space to set up an ergonomic home office.

Staying Productive While Working from Home

Working in the comfort of their homes is a dream come true for many employees. You don’t have to wake up extra early to get ready for work, and you no longer have to deal with the dreadful daily commute and no strict dress code to follow. Eventually, however, the absence of a clear boundary between the business and your personal life can affect your motivation to work and productivity.

Several factors can help you stay motivated and productive while working remotely.

1. Set up an ergonomic workstation

The Stafford University survey says over half of the participants working from home are doing so in shared rooms or bedrooms. However, having a proper workstation at home can help boost your productivity and reduce the feeling of fatigue and body pains. Without a proper workstation, you might find yourself switching positions several times to be comfortable and losing focus on your work.

Invest in a desk that you can adjust to your needs. For instance, you should be able to elevate your laptop or computer monitor so that it’s at eye level. Apart from the desk, your chair plays a role in keeping you comfortable throughout the day. Use a chair that you can adjust the settings and can support your back and neck properly.

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2. Choose a well-lit workspace

When choosing a space to work at home, make sure the area gets plenty of light. Lighting plays a crucial role in your working environment that affects your comfort and productivity. Make sure you also get enough natural light during the day. It helps improve productivity and alertness. If your spot gets too much sunlight, you can use solar shades to block some of the light coming in and protect you against ultraviolet (UV) rays.

Exposure to more natural light during the time of isolation is important to your health. Since the stay-at-home protocol has been implemented, many people don’t get enough sun exposure. Sunlight is a natural source of vitamin D, helps ward off seasonal depression, and aids your sleep. Working with plenty of natural light can minimize headaches and eyestrain.

3. Stick to Consistent Working Schedule

One of the perks of working remotely is that it allows you to have flexible working hours. This setup, however, can result in some bad habits. Some individuals working from home tend to get up a little later, not get dressed properly, and even skip meals. You can save yourself from falling into these bad habits by creating your own working hours and committing to them.

Make sure to get out of your bed on time, shower, get dressed, and eat breakfast before you start working. This can give you a sense of working at an office. You should also give yourself time to take breaks so you can grab snacks and stretch.

The Impact of Work from Home on Businesses

Organizations experience different results from the work-from-home setup. Some businesses reported an increase in productivity since they started remote working. However, some employees felt isolated and stressed due to a lack of boundaries between their professional and personal lives. Minimal encounters with coworkers also affected people’s creativity and minimized team cohesion.

Additionally, not only the employees are affected by the shifting of work settings. The remote working setup tests even the capabilities of leaders to lead. Researchers explain that by having less time in the office, the younger generation doesn’t have that much opportunity to build relationships. They also have fewer chances to learn industry culture and working practices by observing their senior colleagues.

Staying productive and motivated is essential in making working from home a success. Collaboration between leaders and team members is also important to ensure everyone is hitting their goals without compromising their well-being. Remote working is likely here to stay. Getting used to this setup can help you advance your career in the long run.

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