Working from Home — a Guide

Charles Patterson
Mar 9 · 7 min read

So you’re working from home? Fun! This might be your first time and you’re looking for some guidance? You’re in the right place! It can be a little daunting at first but working from home is one of the most enabling life choices you can make.

Hi! I’m Charles. I’ve been working remotely for around five years now and I’m a huge advocate of it. Big fan! My life is drastically better because of it. There have definitely been some challenges but I’ve learned some lessons along the way and I think I’ve got it down pretty well. Here’s a small guide made up of my personal experiences. I know we all have different situations and circumstances but hopefully, some of this helps you out in some way.

Routine, routine, routine

Your morning commute now consists of going to the kitchen. You’ve got so much more free time now to do all the things you couldn’t do before. Great! But that means you need to be organized so you don’t fall into bad habits. Establishing a routine is critical. Remember, you might be at home, but you’re still at work. I’ve found it best to get up as soon as you’ve woken up. Don’t just lay in bed, remember, you’re not on holiday!

✅ Get out of bed

✅ Wash (especially your hands: 20 seconds)

✅ Put clothes on

✅ Eat breakfast

✅ Set a time to be at your work station

✅ Eat lunch

✅ Set a time to leave your work station

Sounds simple, of course, but if you don’t establish a routine early then you might find yourself in front of the TV. If that becomes a pattern then you may find yourself without a job! Nobody wants that.

Once you’ve established your routine, it will allow you to be more flexible with your time. Look at you go, so organised!

A dedicated working space just for working

Just like where you sleep, dedicating an area that is specifically for working in is just as important. By creating a space that is purely dedicated to working will create healthy boundaries in your mind. This is important for your overall wellness and wellbeing. It’s important to not blur the line between home and work. Failing to do so will leave you feeling tired and exhausted!

Establishing a dedicated working area helps you to differentiate between where work begins and work ends. Creating that pattern will allow you to do good work and will create fewer distractions. When you’re finished and clocking off, leaving that area should feel like leaving the office, going home and taking your shoes off.

Never ever work where you sleep

Probably one of the most important things not to do when working from home is to work from your place of rest. If this becomes a habit you’ll inevitably end up struggling with sleep as you’ll start to find it difficult to turn off when you’ve actually finished work. Sleep area for sleep, work area for work. Simple.

Food is fuel

Being at home means you can manage what you’re eating far more easily than being at the office. This is a great opportunity to get yourself some health! Cooking your own food is a fab way to stay healthy whilst also saving some cash. A big time saver is making bigger dinner meals so you can have the leftovers for lunch the next day. The more food you can prep, the less likely you’ll struggle with getting the good kind of food in your belly and the less likely you are to reach for something that’s not conducive to maintaining those great cognitive functions you so desire. Mob kitchen have a fab selection of the most delicious, easy to cook foods (and all for under a tenner)

Remember to eat

Establishing a good eating routine is really important. Fuel your body to fuel your mind. It’s easy to get sucked into work and then the whole day has passed and you haven’t eaten anything — bad times! When you’re in an office, going to grab lunch outside is muscle memory. That changes when you’re at home. Maybe you’re not as close to spots to grab lunch (maybe) and you’re just a little comfier. Either way, make sure you’re eating meals at the appropriate times.

If you are lucky enough to have good food spots nearby, then great! Getting out of the house for lunch is a great way to get away from the screen and break up the day, get some fresh-fresh air.

Exercise apparently is really quite good for you

Your daily activity isn’t what it used to be since you don’t have the commute to the office anymore. All that energy is now in your own hands. Make sure you’re getting exercise where you can. Healthy body, healthy mind, healthy you. Becoming stagnant at home is a quick way to becoming really sick both in mind and body. Joe Wicks is your friend! Doing some 15 minute HIIT sessions with Joey is quick, easy and super effective.

Cabin fever is real

One thing I remember about working in an office is the beautiful feeling of getting through the door to your own home! You’re at home now, a great indicator that the workday is over. Time to live your life. Well… you’re already at home now. Great! But that means you now have to create that feeling by doing something else. Turning off from work can sometimes be hard seeing as home and the office are now in the same place, so making plans to get out of the house is of critical importance.

It’s easy to stay inside all day but make sure you get outside and get some fresh air. Get yourself some sun, it’s good for you.

Arrange time to see human beings

This is one of, if not the most important thing to do for your mental health. Everyone's biggest concern about working from home is loneliness. The best way to combat this is, you guessed it, making sure you’re hanging with other humans. If you’ve got colleagues that live nearby, invite them over to work with you!

After work hangs are a little bit difficult when you’re all the way at home. So you’ve got to be diligent about making plans, going outside and seeing your mates! School nights are encouraged. I can’t state enough how important it is, so please, make sure you’re booking time to see all of your wonderful friends.

Making plans to be social is critical for your wellbeing. Or making plans with the fam. With whoever! Just make sure you're in the presence of people at least a couple of times during the week. If you’re really remote and not near anyone then sort an event out. Get social! If you’re really really remote then well I guess you just want to be on your own and that’s totally fine too.

The next position is the best position

Making sure your work area is fitted with the right working gear is important for your future self and future health. You have the freedom to work around your entire home. Making sure you move around whilst you work is important. Whatever you’re doing, make sure you’re not staying stationary for too long.

Live, laugh, love

You work from the comfort of your own home. You’ve got a sweet routine that keeps you productive and on track every day. Your relationship with work and your working habits are healthy. You’re exercising, eating and sleeping better than you ever have before. You make plans with your friends and have all the fun… oh and you’re super conscious of your posture now too!

Look at you go!

Love from Charles ✌️❤️

Hey, thanks so much for reading! Obviously, these are just my experiences. They’ve really helped me over the years and hopefully, they’ll help you in some way too.

Any questions you have or just wanna chat, please feel free to reach out to me on Twitter @charlespattson

Charles Patterson

Written by

InVision Studio designing @invisionapp

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