In childhood, you would have heard the idiom, ‘in one’s shell.’ At that time, you might haven’t understood the meaning. But now, due to the pandemic, the idiom has appeared with its essence. At this critical time, we all are actually living in our own shells, and undeniably, coming out of this could be difficult.
Schools, stores, shopping malls, and amusement parks, everything is closed. Even the work is shifted from offices, and people are working from home. Though, work from home (WFH) is considered a blessing because it is providing the opportunity to reconcile with the family. However, it is a stressful experience, too.
The very first problem that occurs is the difficulty in social boundaries. Certainly, you might have known this if you are also working from home. If you can recall, then in your starting days of WFH (your family thought it be like a holiday), they talked and moved around you like it’s a ‘new normal’. Well, watching your favourite people’s faces every now and then is no less than a blessing, but still, it can affect your work efficiency, and it actually does.
Lack off work structure
Another problem occurs when you have no set of rules and no organised timetable for work. For example, you wake up late, and then you sit anywhere to work. With this, you eat late, and your necessary gears are not near you. Gradually, it enhances the stress level when you take long breaks in between work, and as a result, you lose all your interest and energy.
Less focus and distraction dilemma
While working at home, everyone would try to stay around you, especially your kids, who would excitedly want to sit beside you and watch how do you work. Moreover, you can get easily distracted by the noise and the volumes raised in the home, for example, the TV sound, the street hawkers’ calls, or continuous ringing bells. All such distractions and no proper work environments lead to a ‘less focused you’, and plenty of mistakes with uncompleted tasks.
Electricity and internet issues
The electricity, internet, and other such facilities vary for domestic and commercial usage. No doubt, the home facilities are limited and not as durable as of your office services. With this, the household resources are limited and fragile, which can make your tasks undone by flouting in your work tempo, and may create problems.
You can’t say no to anyone who comes to you
Another hindrance in your continuous work state is your habit of saying yes to everybody and welcoming everything coming your way. Well, it’s true as you might have to entertain your family at the same time, so they don’t mind your attitude. However, it will affect your work and can make seniors unhappy with you.
Tips to manage stress in WFH situation
Read below the amazing tips to manage stress and forget the stress for good. Check them, and thank us later:
- Start meditating or do exercise. ‘Late is better than never,’ we know, you haven’t visited the gym since you are working from home due to this quarantine. But still, you can make it at home. For this, get some rope and do jumping or find out some amazing meditation and exercise videos on the internet. Additionally, start doing it in the morning (preferably). By doing so, you will become active in your daily office tasks with magical efficiency.
- Build boundaries. Indeed, the need of the hour is to build your territory and create boundaries around your workplace so nobody can visit you every other minute and understand that they can only see you but can’t talk to you. For this, decide the location that would be your workplace for the next few weeks till the offices re-open. It can be your library, the study area, a random unseen (or unused) corner, a basement, or a room in your upper portion.
- Have necessary equipment around. Make sure to keep all the mandatory job-related devices at your reach, such as your phone, a notepad, a pen, a WiFi device, a computer system, a water bottle, and your headsets. It will save your crucial time, and you would have less pressure for task deadlines. Also, your devices and the gears should be in proper working condition. Otherwise, it can blow away the data you were working on if the power fuses.
- Try not to drag your working hours. Working from home doesn’t mean you keep it going for the whole day. Well, at the start, you would have tried to work sitting with your family, which made you work from 9–9 rather than 9–5. The reason is the same: you dragged your hours a lot, you took long breaks, and you sleep in between your dedicated working period. So, decide not to continue with the same routine as it can damage the whole day by disturbing your mind. For instance, set a well-organised work routine at home and do your job from 9am– 5pm and enjoy your time afterwards.
- Reward yourself and your WFH mates. At home, you try to work hard and prove yourself as efficient and responsible as you were in the office. Also, you are busy maintaining your reputation; therefore, you might have forgotten to reward yourself or even your workmates (who are going through the same situation). Well, that’s true. Please don’t be sad; we have a suggestion for you. Get amazing gifts for your stressed-out friends and yourself to appreciate honesty to work. Moreover, for this, you don’t have to go to any store. You can find plenty of options online.
- Maintain a social distance. Not only you but your whole family, including kids, are at home. Still, you need to maintain a distance with your family members, and the people living in your neighbourhood. For the time being, don’t welcome anyone and also, don’t be a guest for the loved ones living far away during work time. No doubt, it would keep your mind stress-free and improve your expertise by keeping you confined to one place.
- Recharge your mind. Another way to recharge your loaded mind is by giving it some rest. Well, you don’t have to sleep the whole day or the whole night, for this, you can have a small nap during your lunch hour. Either talk to your friends, or workmates on the phone, or go for a walk alone to inhale fresh breeze, and whatever you do, be positive in that.
Take care of your diet
Your diet is a necessary part of your life, and undeniably, you earn for the food. So,
- First, take care of your diet and don’t skip the main meals for the sake of work.
- Second, it is advisable to have some yummy refreshments just a hand away, so you can eat and work together.
- Third, have some coffee or tea with your family; it will certainly improve the bond.
Also, you might haven’t known, but food can make your brain work faster and more efficiently.
Be comfortable in saying no
The most fiddly thing to do is to say NO to your loved ones, but at times, it is essential to say no to them and unwelcome their conversations, for their and, of course, your own goodness. Also, say no to the things they demand you to do during the official time.
For example, if they ask you to get some grocery items, don’t pay heed, and ask them to wait till 5 pm. You can also use the delivery service and order things. By doing so, your loved ones would understand that they are putting your career at risk and will not disturb you in the specified working hours.
Track your productivity
Since you are trying to meet official deadlines while staying at home, you need to be focused and devoted to your work. For this, you might have made your daily track report to observe your efficiency, productivity, and the time you take.
Do your tasks, add them in the report and check if it is making you more efficient or lazy. Once you do it, it will help you to increase your productivity.
Don’t use phone a lot
During work (or after work), try to use the phone less. It is also the reason that makes you drag your working hours. Similarly, when work is done, keep the phone on silent, away from you, and give some rest to your eyes. Irrefutably, continuous screen time can harm your eyes. So, beware of it.
Protect your sleep
Finally, a time to sleep has arrived. Make sure that you are taking 8 hours of sleep daily. However, for many, sleeping hours during the WFH period is disturbed, but it can still get to normal.
Indeed, a sleepless person can’t perform well and can go into depression due to restlessness. So, avoid using phones at night and fix your sleeping time to have a good start the next morning.
By following the tips (or solutions) we have mentioned above, you can also make your ‘work from home’ period a blessed one. Also, not only would you enjoy your office chores, but you relish the memorable days that you have spent with family and friends while staying at home.
Image credit: Freepik
Peter Wallace has been an advocate for mental health awareness for years. He holds a master’s degree in counselling from the University of Edinburgh.