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5 Important Tips For People Working From Home

Even when you are working from your bed, you are still working sis

BY Naledi K

Apr 14, 2022, 12:32 PM

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The Covid-19 has obviously changed life as we know it and one of the aspects of our lives that took the most dramatic hit was our careers or how we go about doing our jobs. Essential workers found themselves in a situation where the mere act of going to work and trying to put bread on the table endangered their lives and that of the people they care about. The rest took on financial strain - with pay cuts and inflation mounting- and new ways of getting the job done - which mostly meant working from home.

Things have never been the same since that initial hard (level 5) lockdown that began in March 2020 and yet, most employees have produced some of the best work in this time.

Working from home proved harder to adjust to for some people and gave SA plenty of hilarious, viral moments on social media. From the toddler bursting into her father’s study singing a happy song while he tried to maintain composure because he’s live on TV doing an interview or the guy whose wife walked into the bedroom after a shower and went about her business forgetting that her hubby was in a Zoom meeting with the camera on.

But more than that, most offices have gone virtual and employees have had to adjust their lives to fit the new corporate normal. 

Draw Clearer Boundaries

Things have changed drastically from the days where you would wake up in the morning, bathe, get dressed and leave home to go to the office where you would return in the afternoon, knowing that the remaining hours of the day belonged to your hubby and kids. Now, you are home all the time, except you truly are at the office but must find a way to differentiate - for yourself and your family - what part of your day belongs to who.
Working from home has made it easier for overachievers to work more than the expected 9-to-5 at the expense of neglecting family and "me" time. The opposite is also true for folks who are short-changing the office now that they are home all the time. This is why you need stricter boundaries. Let work time be work time and family/me time be exactly that.

Take The Day Off

People have fallen into the trap of thinking that working from home means they don’t need to use their annual leave (vacation days) because “You are already at home”. Others have gone as far as working through serious illness because “it’s not like you have to go to the office” so why should you take a day off. To that, I say, bullsh*t. Don’t allow yourself to burn out just because you are working from home.

The fact is, home or not, you are still showing up eight hours a day to work and you are productive and there are results to prove this. But when you need to rest, take that day. When you are sick… don’t even hesitate. You're still entitled to those days.

Keep Up

More than moving from a physical office to a virtual one, the pandemic has shaken the corporate world at its core and a lot of things are changing - daily. You need to keep an eye out for how all these changes affect you.
The quarantine period and how it ties to your sick leave, the human rights tied to taking the vaccine and whether your company can force you to take it.

Also, consider institutions like SARS and how your taxes have or will change this year. For example, SARS has recently published an update on its website in relation to home office expenses.

Don't Get Too Comfortable

As much as you are at home, don't forget that you also need to be completing your day's work duties. If you are supposed to be at work at 8, make sure you are up and doing your work by then. Also make sure you are not caught off guard when an impromptu meeting comes up. By this I mean when you wake up and just go on doing your work with your sleeping cap still on. When your colleagues or boss plan an impromptu meeting, you will be caught off guard and might just log in to the meeting having forgotten you have the sleeping cap on. 

Stick To Your Routine

Sticking to your routine will make you feel as if you are still at the office. If you were used to getting to the office at 8, make sure you have logged in to the necessary apps needed for your work by 8, if you go for a break at 10 and 1, do the same even at home and if you leave the office at 5, log off then. This will help you get into the mood for work and used to working from home.