The Covid19 pandemic has been a devastating reality for most of us, it has disrupted the way we socialize, work and even consumer behaviour. One of the biggest change that us Sri Lankans had to face is a new boom in Work From Home Culture (WFH Culture) as companies struggled to keep businesses afloat.
I run a leading construction firm with projects in Colombo, Gampaha and Jaffna Districts and like many businesses mine was too affected by the long and seemingly never ending lockdown.
Like many I was too sceptical about the the concept of Work from home but due to the mounting pressures from my clients I too had to find ways to improvise the way business is conducted.
- Managing your time
- Feeling Lonely
- Tendency to overwork
- Feeling Lazy
- Some extra thoughts
- Contribute to Rise LK and Earn Money
Managing your time
Working remotely sure does have an advantage of time flexibility like if you are not an early riser, you could sleep in throughout the day and then work the entire night or you could just work between intervals.
However, this has an added disadvantage too. You may lose track of time, leading to missed deadlines, late submissions, reduced efficiency, and concentration. You could get super lazy and procrastinate until the last date of an assignment came around which would put a lot of pressure on you.
- Make a time-table for yourself. Unlike a school/college time-table, this one would be reflective of you. You can include bathroom breaks, pizza breaks, Netflix breaks, etc. The sole purpose is for you to be able to follow a particular pattern which gives you enough time to chill along with sufficient time to work to not get ‘worked up’.
- Make a to-do list. This is one of the best ways to manage your time. It will make everything a whole lot easier if you have a particular target set for every day. You could even reward yourself once these are met.
Working outside of your office can cause distractions which are very hard to avoid or prevent. The dishes need to be washed, the bulb needs to be fixed, guests need to be welcomed and the list goes on and on.
Now, these kinds of distractions may not be preventable but you can surely work your way around it because it can cause a decline in productivity and efficiency.
- Set a particular time which you call your ‘work hours’, say from 9 am-4 pm where you focus solely on your work. This period should be such that everyone knows about it in a way that no one disturbs you.
- Maintain a different phone for working and switch off your personal phone while working to avoid non-work calls.
- Enter a new universe for working, perhaps a CoWorking café where you can peacefully work without any disturbances and alongside like-minded people who just want to work like you!
If you don’t have family members home with you when you’re working, you might have the opposite problem: isolation. Even with internet access and tools like Slack, Zoom or Microsoft Teams you might still develop “cabin fever” from being in the same place for too long all by yourself. People who work in shared offices experience impromptu “watercooler” moments of interaction and maybe even share meals together or after-work drinks. Remote workers? We often work asynchronously with our teammates and perhaps have only our houseplants to talk to.
- Include social breaks in your schedule, if you can, by working a few hours then spending an hour or two doing something social outside of your home, such as lunch with friends, then going back to work, Kean advises. Just going out and grabbing a snack while chatting with the counter person can be rejuvenating.
- Try working at co-working spaces or coffee shops so you’ll at least feel like you’re still a part of society. You might just find, as Conrado Lamas has, that you’ll make friends with the people who work at and from the coffee shop. Think of it as your second office.
- Change your work area, that is instead of working from the same desk everyday move to different areas around the house or to a garden.
Tendency to overwork
When you work in an office, you have a prescribed time, say 6 pm when you leave your work and go home. This can turn into a disadvantage when you are working remotely because you never know when it’s time to stop.
You may work 15-16 hours in a day just to finish an assignment or meet a certain deadline which can result in a lack of sleep, rest and missed meals. This is physically and mentally unhealthy for working people.
- Set an end time for your work after which you switch to your personal life.
- Invest time in a manner that does not pressurize you, prioritize your work, giving yourself enough time to both work and manage other things.
- Give yourself ample time to freshen up your body and mind, for example, you can take a nap in between or watch an episode of Friends, do something which makes you feel relaxed.
- Watch some good YouTube videos. Here you can find a list of our Top Sri Lanka Tamil YouTube Channels. Check them out to take a break
Being lazy while working is the basic remote worker starter pack. Since work hours are flexible and there are no boundaries, sometimes you just want to lay off and watch Netflix with a glass of wine.
Then comes, procrastination, the slacker which cuts you off productivity and tells you to chill like tomorrow does not exist!
Some extra thoughts
It is very likely to dwell into bad health habits when you are in front of the laptop all day, every day. Not moving and working all the time will make your body weak, inducing diseases, stress and anxiety.
- Eat healthy food throughout the day to keep your energy up. We have some really healthy recipes you can try out.
- Spend time off work to chill with your friends and family. Do follow the guidelines given by the government
- Do some exercise, jog around the house, clean your room etc.
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