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Being Productive Working from Home

As we all adjust to the new reality of social distancing, a lot of people are suddenly working from home. We feel for you, it is a challenging transition. The Design Pool team all work remotely and know it takes a while to feel productive working from home. Not to mention, also keep your sanity (and relationships!) intact. In fact, we shared our tips on keeping your sanity while working from home on the Color Karma blog.

One of the main challenges to working from home is the lines between work and home start to blur. Going into an office separates these two parts of life and it can be uncomfortable when those boundaries become porous.

If you’re adjusting to this new reality, we have a few tips our team has learned along the way.

Pattern P595

5 tips to be productive working from home:

Create a dedicated workspace.
Since this current arrangement is temporary, you probably don’t already have a dedicated workspace in your home. This means you end up working in places that are normally for relaxing and having fun. First, set up an area dedicated to work and use that spot every day. Keep it separate from places dedicated to relaxing and fun. In addition, if you think you’ll need to be on video calls, set up with a nice background. For instance, one with no overflowing litter boxes or piles of pizza boxes.

Set boundaries with your family.
You may not be the only person in your family readjusting to working from home right now. Get into a new routine with your family. If it’s just you and your partner, have your coffee together, and then politely ignore each other during the day. Close a door or put on headphones, above all be respectful of each other’s jobs. Keep in mind that job-related stress may also be running high. Try not to take it out on each other. If you have kids at home too, share that responsibility so you both are able to get your work done. Also, try to make the best of this unusual moment in time. For example, enjoy having lunch together or take a break and go for a walk.

Touch base with your coworkers.
This weird thing can happen when you’re working alone. Suddenly you feel like you’re not sure where to start or what to tackle first. Without the regular buzz of your usual routine, it can seem like a bit of a free for all. Get into the work mode by touching base with your other coworkers and/or your boss. Perhaps all it takes is a quick video chat or instant messaging. It doesn’t have to be a lot of time, but morning check-in can go far in getting you focused and start your day.

Clean up at the end of the day.
When you’ve wrapped up work for the day, clear off that new dedicated workspace you established. If you leave a pile of work in full view, it might leave you with an unfinished feeling. You don’t want your work tempting you while snuggled up with your dog and a glass of wine.

And speaking of wine…
Don’t drink and work. If you had a flash of inspiration, write it down and deal with it tomorrow. (Honestly, that great idea might not be that great tomorrow morning.)

How is it going for you?

How have you been adapting to a change in your work routine? As we are social distancing in real life, let’s connect in these social spaces. Let me know how it’s going in the comments below.

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Kristin Crane

Kristin Crane has designed jacquard designs for the home furnishing and residential jobber market for many years, with mills in the US and in China. Today, she writes about pattern and design trends for Design Pool from her home in Providence, Rhode Island. When not writing about fabric, she can be found weaving in her home studio or hiking along the Rhode Island coast.


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