It's no secret that working from home has been a bit of a challenge for us all, but I want to share a couple of my own top tips in the hopes they might make the transition a little easier for you all.
First and foremost, don't put so much pressure on yourself! At the end of the day, we are all going through massive change right now so you can't expect yourself to have your normal work ethic nor the level of motivation you usually have. Don't set your expectations too high, just do what you can, when you feel like it. We're all still settling into this situation and accepting the new world we live in.
Personally, I think that breaking your work up into easy and more manageable chunks helps to make it seem less overwhelming, so find an organisational system that works for you! For me, that's a diary, weekly planner and to-do lists. When working your way through tasks, make sure to take regular breaks and reward yourself for achieving each of them. If you're planning your day, block out the times you'd usually be travelling to and from uni, as well as your meals and daily exercise allowance. I usually try to go for my daily walk at 3pm but sometimes I'll go in the evening as a way to take photographs for my project, so when I don't go out at 3pm, I make sure to take a short 10-15 minute break to socialise with my family instead.
It's great to be able to have a separate workspace and relaxation space, but I personally have my desk in my bedroom, as I'm sure the vast majority of you to do. Whilst they're not in separate rooms, it's great to try and make some degree of separation regardless. I try to work in different areas when possible, as this helps to change it up a little, which is especially useful later at night. That way, once you've finished working you can head to your room to relax, and it creates a divide between the two. It's also much better for your mental health to try and work outside or at least in a light, bright area so I try to do any non-digital work outside when I can!
Utilise the new ways of communicating and find your community, whether that be online or locally. It's important to keep in touch with people and stay connected, especially if you're alone right now. Calling your friends and family, whether that be a simple phone call or a fun video call quiz, is the easiest way to battle the loneliness that some of us might be feeling right now with the UK Lockdown.
Lastly, I think that 'normality' is as important as structure. It's good to do as many things you'd usually do to kind of trick yourself into thinking it's an average day. Keep your morning routine the same: get up, eat and most importantly, get dressed. I've been so tempted to spend every day in my PJ's, especially as no one is really seeing me, but I've found getting dressed and ready actually helps to put me in the mood to work.
Ultimately, it's important to remember that we are all in this together. None of us expected us to be where we are at the moment but do remember that it won't be like this forever!
Tune in later in the week, where Rowena will be talking about adapting a project and working when you have limited access to resources.
Best, Harriet Moore
Marketing and Enterprise Lead