The ongoing pandemic has changed people’s lives in ways they never imagined before COVID-19 became a permanent part of their vocabulary. Many people now work remotely part-time or entirely from home and experience difficulties maintaining their productivity because of less-than-ideal work conditions.
They often deal with new challenges, such as physical discomforts, distractions, and outdated technologies, that eat away at their time and cause frustration and stress. If they must work after hours more than usual to make up for lost time, they can feel like there’s no end to the cycle of pandemic woes and constant work.
The good news is that it is possible to work from home in a productive, positive manner that guarantees that you get more work done and protect your health and well-being at the same time. You merely need to follow these tips to improve your work-from-home environment:
Optimize Your Work Area
One of the best ways to improve productivity is by improving your home workspace, like learning how to make an office chair more comfortable. The human spine requires support when people sit for long periods. That way, they don’t experience posture-related problems and fatigue. This means you should consider investing in a lumbar pillow for your existing chair or purchasing a new chair designed with this and other types of ergonomic support.
Eye strain causing blurry vision and intense fatigue can occur when people spend too much time in front of computer screens, including their mobile devices. Although you can help reduce eye strain by looking away from a screen every 20 minutes or so, you can also help reduce and protect against it is by increasing the size of text and images on a screen. If you only own small screens, you should invest in a large-screen monitor so that you don’t need to squint when working. You might also invest in computer glasses designed to reduce glare, boost color contrast and protect against the adverse effects of blue light.
Create a Separate Workspace
Many people don’t have a dedicated home office. They work in a living room, bedroom, dining room, or kitchen. If they work in a room that they typically use for entertainment or sleeping, they might give in to the impulse to watch TV or take naps. If they work near the kitchen, they might feel the urge to get up and snack more often. These areas also often experience high foot traffic from people who need to use them or who want to “quickly” talk to or interact with the home worker for some reason.
If you don’t have a dedicated workspace that serves as your private home office, then it’s time to start brainstorming a better solution. For example, if you absolutely must work in an open area, consider rearranging your workspace so that you face a wall or a window covered by a curtain. If you have an office in a separate room and people won’t leave you alone, install a smart lock. By simply locking the door, you not only prevent other people from walking in and out of your office whenever they please. You also remind yourself not to leave the office unless you’re on a break. If your loved ones continue to distract you, remind them of the reasons you work. If they’re disruptive children who keep forgetting the rules, emphasize your willingness to discipline them for unruly behavior.
Focus on Tech Improvements
Business leaders invest in up-to-date tech and IT departments because they know that falling behind with technology can slow down production and lead to revenue losses. Most home workers don’t have the funds to buy the latest tech. Yet, non-working and inefficient technologies and internet outages often cause them problems. Thankfully, solutions exist.
Speak to your employer. With a prolonged pandemic in mind, many employers have adjusted their budgets and provided newer tech to home-based workers. If your employer doesn’t offer these options, talk to retailers about installment plans. Many electronics retailers now offer installments because they recognize home-based work problems. They consider installments an opportunity to help workers and build their customer base. To improve the internet, speak with your provider. People often experience outages because their homes contain outdated wiring that an ISP can test and replace if needed. You might discover that your current provider throttles or slows your internet speed at certain times of the day or if you use a certain amount of bandwidth. If so, discuss new discounted plans that bypass throttling with them or switch to a better ISP.
Although working from home can save you time and money in relation to commutes and provide other perks, it might not be ideal for different reasons. Yet, you can make your home office a pleasant and productive environment. You only need to rethink how you interact with your workspace and people in your home. You also need to recognize that you must manage common business-related disruptions and problems that your employer typically took care of at your former workplace.