If you’re finding it hard to get in the right mindset for work while working from home, and miss the habits and buzz of being in the office, there are actions you can take to improve the situation.
1. Set a time and place for work
Occupational psychologist Emma Donaldson-Feilder says it all starts with setting boundaries.
“Create as much distinction between working and not-working as you can. This could be in terms of time and/or space,” says Donaldson-Feilder.
Schedule start and finish times for working so you can switch off at the end of the working day. It could help to set alarms to discipline yourself to start and finish when they ring, she says.
You should also have a distinct space in your home where you do your work and only use it for working. If space is tight, Donaldson-Feilder advises clearing away your work materials (computer, papers, etc) as much as you can when you finish work.
2. Build a commute into your day
The time you usually take to get from home to an office provides a mental association between the 2 places, which can make you more productive.
Donaldson-Feilder suggests going for a walk at the start and end of your working day to help makes this separation at home. "Walk to the station or bus stop as you would if you were going to or from your workplace," she says. This will also add exercise into your day.
3. Pretend you're going into the office
Getting ready to go to work provides a separation between the working and home or leisure part of your day. So keep up your morning routine — set an alarm, make coffee and get dressed.
“Change your clothes so that you wear different clothing in work time and non-work time," says Donaldson-Feilder. This can help you adapt your mindset when you move from 1 to the other.
There are also apps and websites that help recreate the office atmosphere, with audio of keyboards tapping, phones ringing, coffee machines whirring and air conditioners humming.
Read our tips below for more advice on how to properly switch off at the end of the day.
Quote of the day
Things work out best for those who make the best of how things work out.
John Wooden, basketball player and coach