LIVING alone can be quite a challenge but especially so when you are working from home. When you live alone, you’re responsible for all the cleaning, cooking, and maintaining the house on top of your work tasks. But while all of us are affected by the new set-up in this pandemic, we have also learned that these adjustments are not impossible albeit really hard at times.
You might have heard from your parents or teachers in the past about the importance of time management and this might ring as really cliche for some but, if anything, this new set-up has proven how proper time management can work wonders.
Here are a few tips we have gathered which might help ease the burden of having to tend to your house all alone while working from home:
1. Avoid sleeping in
It can be tempting to sleep for “five more minutes” especially when our mothers are not around to keep on waking us up. But we all know that five minutes usually extend to 10 to 30 minutes until an hour or more. Before you know it, you have less than minutes to prepare for that morning’s Zoom meeting. Maybe, that is sometimes the reason we hate online meetings so much, we haven’t mentally prepared for it for the day.
Moreover, waking up way before your scheduled appointments allows you to do things around the house at a less hurried pace. Less pressure.
2. Set an alarm
Sometimes when we’re so engrossed in work that we forget to eat lunch or to take a break and stretch outside. I’m personally guilty of that. What we can do is set multiple alarms reminding ourselves that it’s lunchtime, stretch time, coffee break, etc. To also avoid straining your eyes from too much exposure to your gadgets, follow the 20-20-20 exercise. For every 20 minutes spent looking at a screen, look at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds. It would help if it’s something green and if you blink your eyes during this 20-second break every now and then.
3. Cook in big portions
To avoid having to cook multiple times in a day, it’s best to cook your food on weekends, store them in the fridge, and just heat them up when it’s mealtime. This way, you not only save energy, you also save time. It can be stressful to chop all the ingredients, cook them, eat, and wash the dishes, while you’re also thinking about the presentation you will be doing later that afternoon.
Remember, it’s never wise to skip meals especially when we are in a pandemic. This might compromise your immune system. As an alternative, you can keep finger food snacks in handy to prevent you from starving too much like dried fruits, nuts, etc.
4. Start the day by taking a bath
This might be very obvious advice but most of us have grown comfortable with the new set-up that we just usually open up our laptop first thing in the morning to work. Because our eyes and fingers are already strained from work later that day and we’re so engrossed in work, that we spend the entire day not taking a bath at all.
Best thing to do is follow a schedule of morning shower, maybe after your morning coffee. This way, you will be more energized and your mind will be more used to actual preparations made before working even if that’s only a few steps from your bed.
5. Set an end-of-the-day time
It could be difficult to define the line between personal life and work in a work-from-home set-up. But it’s not impossible. Depending on your work schedule and agreement with your employer, it’s best to have a specific time of clock-out for work even if there are still tasks unfinished. Example, you decided that by 7pm you’re done for the day so you can also do other household chores for yourself or prepare dinner. You have to strictly follow that schedule and brush off the guilt that you still have a few unticked boxes on your to-do list. You can do that tomorrow.
This way, your colleagues and boss will be used to not accessing you anymore beyond work hours unless it’s a life-and-death situation, which most of the time it is not.