Are you new to working from home?

Not sure how to keep a productive schedule throughout the day? Can't find good habits that stick? Or maybe you've been operating from your home office for a while, but could still use some advice to up your game? As creative professionals who are pretty familiar with WFH life, we're here to help.

 

Stick to a morning routine

Have a specific and structured morning routine to stick to every weekday. Set your alarm the night before, and commit to not hitting snooze too many times. Once you’re up, try to get into a familiar flow. For me, it’s: brush teeth, feed the cat, wash any leftover dishes from the night before (this kind of minor physical activity helps my brain wake up faster), get changed into the day’s clothes (don’t stay in your PJs!), then prepare my morning beverage and breakfast. I love sitting down to my desk in the morning with my hot tea – this signals to me that it’s now time to start the workday.


Keep yourself accountable

Tailor this to whatever works best for you. Maybe the best way to keep yourself accountable for the day’s workload is to text a friend with your goals for the day. Perhaps you prefer to write out a bulleted list to check off throughout the day. Or are you a dedicated devotee to our Schedule Magic Notebook or Notepad, where you can block out your time and activities for the day? No matter the method, give yourself a way to track your progress throughout the day.


Set a timer while you work

Our rule of thumb is to complete 45 minutes of working time, then take a 15-minute break. Once you set your timer for 45 minutes, put your phone in another room. When the alarm goes off, it’s time for your 15-minute break! (Set a timer for these 15 minutes, too!) May we suggest a Lizzo dance break to get your body moving? Taking a short walk outside? Or it might be time for a re-up on your mug of coffee or tea. Once the 15 minutes are up, start the process over!


Take a content-free lunch break

It’s important to let your eyes take a rest from screens throughout the day. Commit to making your lunch break content-free – that means no Instagram scrolling, no email checking, etc. This gives you time and brain space to actually enjoy every bite of your lunch, think about the textures and flavors, and digest properly.


Pack up & clean up at the end of the workday

If your workspace is impermanent, be sure to “pack it up” at the end of the day. Start by writing your to-do list for the next day, to give yourself a sense of closure. Put away your laptop, notebook – anything that has to do with work. If your workspace is a designated desk or table, be sure to clean up any remnants of the day so that you can start fresh the next morning. Clear off any dishes and cups, tidy up computer cords, put away pens and papers. In both workspace scenarios, be sure to give the space a disinfecting wipe-down at least a few times per week.


Another important, related note: Give yourself a workday cutoff time, if you can. Many of us have the tendency to let work time bleed into leisure and personal time. For your own self-care, it’s best to let your brain turn off “work mode” after a certain hour.


Stick to a bedtime ritual, too!

Just like you need a morning routine, you need a nighttime one too. Try to avoid any screen time for at least an hour before bed (I set a recurring calendar event called “No more screens.”). Give yourself a designated time to start “getting ready for bed,” so that you fall into a routine and don’t stay up too late. Have a book ready next to your bed to do some reading before you fall asleep. Set yourself up for sleep success in whatever way is best for you, and then hit the hay.


Anything we missed? What habits are working for you as you work from home? Let us know on Instagram!