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The Speedel Guide to Working from Home (WFH)

Love it or loathe it, working from home (WFH) has become the new normal for many companies and individuals during the pandemic. While many companies are returning to the office, many are choosing to do so using new hybrid models, offering a flexible way of working and allowing for a greater work-life balance.

However, while the dream of WFH seems ideal, it's easy for you to become your own worse enemy. Distractions, lack of peer pressure from colleagues and bosses, and a less restrictive timetable can all make the WFH life a challenge.

In this guide, we've pulled together a few tips to help you get the most out of the WFH life.

1. Create A Dedicated (Inspiring) Workspace

Whether you work from a spare bedroom, conservatory or corner of your living room, find somewhere you can dedicate to working remotely. Ideally, try to avoid working from the couch or taking over the kitchen table and try instead to leave these spaces for leisure time. Creating a dedicated workspace will help you get into the right frame of mind as soon as you start your day.

2. Be Social

One of the biggest downsides to WFH life is the absence of casual social interactions with colleagues; at the copier or in the kitchen over the coffee machine, for example.

You can still keep up some level of interaction with colleagues. Why not send them a quick email or schedule a video catch up.

Being social and gaining that all important human interaction doesn't need to come from your colleagues. Why not use your breaks to meet up with a friend for a walk or head out with a family member?

3. Start Early

While the morning commute is not a favourite pastime of most people, travel time can be a great way to prepare for the day ahead. At home, however, the transition from bed to desk can be a little more jarring.

Diving into your to-do list soon after you wake up can be a great way to make progress and feel like you've had a more productive day overall. Otherwise, you might find yourself taking a long breakfast and letting your morning sluggishness wear down on your motivation.

4. Structure Your Day

Structure your day like you would if you were in the office. Start by segmenting what you'll do and when for the day. Create personal events and reminders, allocating time for each task. Google Calendar makes this easy.

It can be helpful to commit to doing more than you think you'll accomplish. Knowing you have a busy day ahead can actually help you concentrate and work more productively. Even if you don't get everything done, you can roll tasks over and know you've accomplished all you can on that particular day.

5. Take Breaks

Allow for actual breaks away from your computer (and other digital devices for that matter). Avoid scrolling through social media and watching YouTube videos, and actually go outside for some fresh air, walk the dog or spend a short amount of time with someone in your household.

6. Leave Your Home

If you're really struggling to get motivated when working from home, take your WFH life to a local coffee shop, library or public lounge, taking advantage of Wi-Fi while simulating some of the energy of the office.

7. Decide On A Finishing Time

While it's easy to think WFH allows you greater control over your schedule and the opportunity to gain a better work-life balance, this isn't always the case.

It's easy to lose track of time and never actually switch off, when your desk is in the spare room or even at your kitchen table.

Try to keep your work and personal life separate, aiming to finish at a set time each day. Of course, you might not always be able to clock off exactly on time, but it'll allow you to work towards a better structure.

8. Prepare Lunch

Don't waste time in the middle of your day chopping and preparing lunch. Instead, prep your food the night before, just like you would if heading into the office. You can then either shorten your work day or use your lunch break to get outside and enjoy some fresh air.

9. Maintain A Healthy Lifestyle

Eating and sleeping are perhaps two of the most important factors when it comes to a healthy lifestyle, and both can be affected by a hectic work schedule.

Avoid drifting to the kitchen during your spare moments and eating unhealthily. Instead, try to maintain a healthy diet and keep a consistent bed time, allowing for at least 7-8 hours of good quality sleep. With a strong body and mind, you'll be set for anything WFH can throw at you.

It's also a good idea to maintain your fitness regime. If you used to head to the gym first thing in the morning or right after the office, try to stick to that routine. This will not only help you start or finish work at a set time, but also provide a much needed release.

10. Avoid Social Media

Social media is one of the biggest distractions when it comes to WFH. While it can be hard to do, remove your social networks from browser shortcuts and log out of the accounts on your phones (or set your phone to Do Not Disturb). Essentially, making it harder to access and browse your social media accounts will allow you to remain focused and on track.

11. Create A WFH Playlist

Create a music playlist that matches the task in hand, using it to motivate you, relax you or fire you up, according to what needs to be achieved! Music is much more likely to motivate you than watching the TV in the background, which can usually serve more as a distraction.

12. Work When You're Most Productive

If you're most productive in the morning and less motivated during the mid-afternoon period, schedule your day to work to your strengths. Schedule more challenging tasks when you're most productive, leaving those easier logistics jobs for later.

13. Join A Remote-Friendly Company

More and more companies are making the switch to allow for a more flexible work schedule, and many employees are now demanding it. If working from home (or having the option to) is truly a deal breaker for you in 2021 and beyond, then you might need to seek out a remote-friendly company, if yours can't (or won't) budge.

Job sites that list work from home ads include:

14. Employ A Same Day Courier

With more and more teams now working from home (or working in a new hybrid office-home model), shipping documents and contracts for signing and processing has become a little tricky. Rather than waiting until you're next in the office, establish a relationship with a same day courier like Speedel who can collect documents and contracts within the hour and ship them where they need to be.

Whether it's other members of your team that need to read and sign the documents or one of your clients, we can help. Don't let hybrid and WFH models leave your clients waiting around, choosing to use us on an ad-hoc basis or as a business account customer.

Call us on 0333 772 2021 or email talk@speedel.co.uk to see how we're helping remote teams stay connected with their colleagues and clients in areas such as law, real estate and healthcare. Get a quote today.

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