Working from home seems like a great idea at first. You have the most relaxed dress code, and the best commute imaginable. Then suddenly it’s two o’clock in the afternoon and you’re still in your pajamas. You haven’t spoken to another human soul all day. Your office is a dark cave and you don’t even know what season it is outside. Here are a few tricks that can save your sanity if you’re working from home for an extended period.
Make sure that your desk is near a window, somewhere where you can see the outdoors and get plenty of sunlight. You might need a high brightness computer monitor to compensate, but it’ll all be worth it. Working from home can wreak havoc on your circadian rhythms and confuse your internal clock. Sunlight helps you process vitamin D, can help you maintain a routine and helps your body keep a regular sleep cycle.
Using a timer to keep track of your work is an excellent way to maximize your productivity and challenge yourself to stay on task while at the same time preventing you from burning out. Choose a task and set a timer. It doesn’t have to be terribly long: just long enough to get something done, but not so long that you find yourself getting distracted. When the timer is done, take a short break, look over what you did or set another timer and pick the next small task.
The last and most important way to stay sane and productive is to have a buddy. Working from home can be very isolating and lends itself to either distractions or overwork. Accountability buddies can save you from your workload and yourself. They won’t just help you stay on task, they’ll remind you when it’s time to take a break or stop entirely.