Since the Covid pandemic, a lot of us (both students like me, and those who have moved on to the work force) have transitioned to remote work. For some, this is a blessing – who doesn’t love the freedom to work and study without getting dressed and commuting for half an hour? On the other hand, for others (like me) it is a lifestyle adjustment that is sometimes difficult to make. In this post, I will look at some tips for making the transition easier, and get into a routine that works for both you and your school or employer.
Tip #1: Create a Routine
Creating a routine for yourself will help you adjust to the change in your lifestyle. Personally, I feel like I have control over my day if I have a set schedule. I know what I am going to do and when, and I don’t have to worry about what I am going to do when school is over or what the next day will bring. I know that I need to wake up at a certain time, get in my work for a certain amount of time, and then go to a certain place at a certain time. It gives me structure, and helps me make the transition to working from home.
Tip #2: Find a Good Work Space
I know that there are some people who are lucky enough to have a home office, and that is great. However, for those of us who have to work from our bed, or on the couch, or the kitchen table, we need to find a good work space. Personally, I have been using a folding desk that sits on top of my dining table. It’s a bit small, but it works for me. I have a timer to go off every half an hour, and I have a small folder that I use to keep my current classwork in.
I have a small desk lamp so that I can easily read things if I need to. I also have a little bowl of candy that I keep beside me, just in case I get hungry or stuck on a problem. Sometimes, I will watch a movie or something on Netflix while I work, but I try to avoid that as much as possible. Instead, I will mute the movie and listen to music (I like to listen to music while I work). It helps keep me focused and it helps the time go by faster.
Tip #3: Set Deadlines, and Use a Timer
Deadlines are important, and it is good to keep them in mind. I have to get a certain amount of work done every day, and I have to do it in a certain amount of time. Like most, I have a timer set to go off every half an hour, and I make sure to get as much work done as I can in the time left. I find that the timer is very helpful, as it keeps me from wasting time on unproductive browsing or watching. I also like to set a timer for everything else. I have a timer on my phone for when I am on the bus or the subway, and I have a timer for when I am cooking.
Tip #4: Work in Blocks
In order to keep myself from procrastinating and wasting time, I like to work in blocks. I have a block of time that I devote to each assignment, and then I move on to the next. For example, I have a block of time where I work on my study guides and notes for my classes. I only work on that for a certain amount of time, and then I move on to the next assignment. I use a timer to make sure I don’t spend too much time on one thing.
Tip #5. Optimize Your Living Situation
Do you live somewhere quite and peaceful, or next to a noisy club? If you can’t focus and reach peak productivity in your current environment, maybe it’s time to move. The most important thing is that you feel relaxed. Working from home is not for everyone – often it’s better to separate your work environment from where you sleep. Think outside the box here – I’ve seen people use remodeled shipping containers as remote offices, another friend of mine moves around condos in Columbus because she just loves Ohio – do something that works for you, and don’t be afraid to experiment.
Tip #6: Make Time to Relax
While I love the freedom that comes with working from home, I also like to make time to relax. I like to spend an hour or so every day doing something that relaxes me and takes my mind off of school. Sometimes, I will read a book or go on a walk. I will spend time with my family, or I will go out and do something that I enjoy. I make sure to do something that makes me happy and relaxed every day, and this helps me to feel more in control.
Working and studying from home is a great option for many people. I’ve been doing it for about a year now, and I have gradually come to love it. I find that I have a lot more time to do other things that I enjoy, and I don’t have to worry about getting dressed and going to school every day. However, this is not for everyone. It is a good idea to take some time to think about what is important to you and what you want in life. If working from home is what you want, then make sure that it works for you. If not, then there are other options out there.