It’s been said that it takes 66 days to form a new habit. In the age of COVID, we’ve been forced to change everything about the way we work—from finding ways to do our jobs while our kids are running around screaming to being able to focus on what we’re doing without the distraction of worrying about anyone we’ve ever known. Old habits have been forced into submission. No longer do we rise from our slumber, take a shower, get dressed, and head to the office, and this disruption of routine has had a major impact on the way we work.
Freelancers and others who already worked from home will see a lot of what they probably already do listed below, but if you’re a usual office worker, these tips will help if you’re suddenly facing a new list of challenges outside the cubicle.
In order to remain productive, we have to form new habits and routines to get our minds into the framework they need to do the work that needs to be done. These changes don’t happen overnight, but they can happen. This article will outline ways to form new habits that will also help you fit in your busy life schedule.
Before any of the things listed below will even have a chance of helping you, be sure you’ve defined a workspace in your house that isn’t your bedroom or in front of a television. Perhaps you’ll have to take over a closet, but those clothes can find somewhere else to dwell for the time being. Find that space and take it. Make it your own.
1. Making Lists
Make a list of everything you need to accomplish during the day, and be sure to include things like feeding the kids and self-care tasks along with work stuff.
2. Defining Hours
Go down your list and detail how long it will take you to accomplish the things you’ve written out. Give yourself a little leeway, too, because we all know things can happen (and do) when we least expect them to.
3. Choosing Times
Find when you’re able to concentrate the most effectively. Is that in the evening, once everything in your house is quiet? Or do you prefer mornings before everyone rises? Can you split the difference? Write out the times you feel you’ll be most productive for work.
How long does it usually take you to get ready for work? Be sure you’re working that in somehow as well. Unless you’re a person who can jump out of bed and onto the computer, you’ll need that time to wake up and get your body doing what it does best.
Time to devise a schedule. You know your life best, so print out an hourly calendar and get to work putting all those tasks on it. Put it somewhere you can see it, and tell family members this is the list they need to follow. They can’t be banging on the door when you’re trying to focus.
6. Try Your Schedule
Set alarms on your mobile device if you need to, but be sure you’re attempting to stick to that schedule as closely as possible. Make notes of when things don’t go the way you’ve planned them.
7. Regroup and Reschedule
After a week, take a look at your schedule and adjust where needed. If some of your items ran over the time allotted, work that extra time in. Write out a new schedule and adjust.
8. Wash, Rinse, Repeat
Every day, try to follow the exact list you’ve outlined. It won’t take long before it all becomes a habit, and you won’t even need to think about it any longer.
These are just general tips and tricks. If you already have something that’s working for you, by all means, keep doing that. However, if you’re stuck and overly stressed because you’re trying to fit everything in, give it a shot.
Just remember that it’ll take a while to make things stick. Don’t give up.
I hope this helps someone in some small way. Do you have any tips to add to this list?