How to Make Working From Home Fun: 6 Tips
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The pandemic did many things — including changing many employer’s attitudes about telecommuting. Nor was the shift only on their end. Nearly 40% of respondents to a recent survey indicated that they would rather quit than return to the office.
However, working from home does have its detractors for all the benefits the arrangement offers. For example, you might find yourself battling loneliness and boredom, longing for the days of water-cooler gossip. Here are six tips for making working from home more fun.
1. Create a Comfortable Workspace
Your home is your castle — why not make your workspace into a comfortable throne room? After all, you are finally free of that backbreaking office chair, and the aroma of your colleague’s leftover microwaved salmon.
Start with your chair. You’ll spend many hours there, so make sure it is ergonomic for your body. You should be able to place your feet flat on the floor with your legs bent at 90-degree angles and feel considerable support for your back.
You might decide to go with a pain-busting option like an inflatable exercise ball or a variable-height desk. Perhaps you will alternate between a chair, standing and the occasional bounce or lumbar stretch.
A cozy room temperature boosts your productivity — hooray for no more office thermostat wars. If you sit by a sunny window, you might need a fan or portable AC in the summer. Conversely, if your office is above your garage, you should insulate the space below to keep your feet from freezing in the winter.
2. Bring the Outdoors In
Way back in the 1980s, NASA discovered that humble houseplants could clean toxins like formaldehyde from your indoor air. If you aren’t quite at orchid level with a watering can yet, stick with succulents. They look adorable while requiring next to no maintenance.
Even looking at pictures of nature can improve your productivity, so deck your walls with framed photographs of your favorite nature escapes. Take down those heavy curtains and let in as much natural light as possible. Consider investing in an anti-glare screen so that you can work outside on your patio when the weather permits.
3. Add a Little Aroma
Aromatherapy is another way you can increase your productivity and even reduce symptoms of certain conditions. Plus, your favorite fragrance won’t clash with your cubicle mate’s perfume when you work from home.
Scents that uplift you and give you energy include those with citrusy notes, like lemon. Lavender is fabulous for deadline days when stress levels soar, and eucalyptus can help ease a nose stuffy from allergies or cold germs.
4. Include Some Soothing Tunes
Does your job require you to think on your feet, such as providing customer service? If so, you might want to jam out in between phone calls and chats. Research published by the National Institutes of Health suggests that listening to upbeat music increases brain processing speed.
What if you enjoy slow jams? You’ll still boost your memory by listening to your favorite tunes. Some people believe that certain chords even have the power to ease chronic pain and heal your DNA — if you like the sound, it can’t hurt.
5. Check Into a Virtual Water Cooler
Loneliness is one of the biggest drawbacks of working from home. You don’t realize how much you miss your colleagues, interesting quirks and all until your only daily company consists of your cat.
Check into Slack or Mango — whatever communication system your organization uses. Along with sticking to business, exchange appropriate pleasantries, like wishing the team good morning when you punch in for the day. When attending meetings, turn on your camera. Everyone else is just as worried about their appearance as you are about yours, so push embarrassment aside and revel in the facsimile of in-person contact.
6. Have Some Fun and Games
Finally, taking breaks can increase your productivity — but far too many work-from-home professionals forget this principle. Why not invest in a tomato timer and adopt the Pomodoro method? This technique involves working for 25 minutes, then taking a 5-minute break. After three Pomodoros, go for a longer rest of 15 to 30 minutes.
What can you do? Use your longer breaks to take a brisk walk around the block or have a snack with your children. You can also stock your office with fun toys for your shorter rest periods, such as a dartboard or indoor putting green — something that gets you up and moving a bit is best.
Make Working From Home Fun With These 6 Tips
Telecommuting offers a host of benefits, but it can also get boring. Make working from home fun with these six tips.