The Secrets to Working From Home

Mar 03/03/20

The Secrets to Working From Home

 

One of the most interesting survey results from our latest resident survey was that 22% of Eastonites work-from-home full time, and 44% work-from-home sometimes.

 

That’s markedly higher than the national average of 5.2%, according to 2017 U.S. Census data, and even higher than the Austin average of 8.3%. But it does explain why Eastonites tend to be a happy bunch—Stanford economist Nicolas Bloom found that working from home increases morale and productivity. (But y’all probably already knew that).

 

So, what are the keys to successfully working from home? We’ve got your tips right here:

 

Build a Dedicated Work Space

Trying to work from the couch might sound comfortable, but it actually makes it harder to focus on your tasks and get into a work mindset. Create a dedicated area for working, and stock it with the furniture and equipment you need to do your job. Maybe this means finding an ergonomic desk and chair, or a certain computer and printer set-up. Nowadays, many home workers need a set-up with the right lighting and background for doing video calls. It’s also a good idea to have a space with a door you can close—both to create a quiet space while you’re working and to create a firm boundary at the end of the day.

 

Create a Work Day Routine

Many work-from-homies have certain hours they must be available online, but even if you don’t, consider setting standard “work hours.” Setting up a regular work routine helps you get into habits that keep you productive: set a morning alarm, get out of your pajamas, and get to your desk at around the same time every day. Build lunch and exercise breaks into your day, and give yourself a standard “closing” time—working from home shouldn’t mean working all the time.

 

Find A Third Place

In social theory, a third place is a place that is separate from the first place (home) and second place (work), where people can go regularly and gather for community and creative interaction—think coffee shops, bars, barber shops, gyms, bookstores and parks. Finding these third places are especially important for people who work at home and might not get as much social interaction during the day. Living at Easton Park, the Union is a great example of a Third Place—with options for relaxing (Game area! Gym! Free lattes!) and even spaces to work on a laptop if you need to get out of that awesome home office for a change of scenery.

 

Hold Yourself Accountable

Without the constraints of an office environment, some home workers find themselves slipping into bad habits: working with the TV on, spending too much time on social media, or getting distracted by household chores or pets. Don’t be afraid to use tricks to create structure and keep yourself on task: use a planner, make daily and/or weekly to-do lists, and give yourself rewards for completing projects. Many workers also appreciate task-management apps, such as Basecamp or Trello, and/or time-management apps that let you see where the hours in your day are going.

 

Are you an Eastonite who works from home? We’d love to hear your own work-from-home tips and comments—please share them with us on social media!

 

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