Over the past few weeks, this world has seen a lot of change – a lot of hiring freezes, business closures, universities going online, border blockades, social distancing and more. As a Content Creator for WhyRyerson and Communications Coordinator for my part-time real estate job, I have been fortunate enough to be able to work from home for the last while. A few of my exams have gotten cancelled or got turned into written assignments, all of my classes have moved online, and Google Hangouts has become my new way of getting some face time with my friends.
Ryerson has been incredibly patient and accommodating during this transition. However, even then, for an extrovert like me, it has been quite an interesting challenge to find ways to adapt and maintain high productivity during this shift.
So I’m going to share my top five #WFH and #SchoolFromHome tips with you in hopes that they will help you in the future if you ever need to find ways to stay engaged and productive at home!
Work From Home Tips
1. Set two+ alarms – this is mostly for me and others like me who mess up their sleep schedules very quickly. Staying at home day in-day out has made me lose track of time multiple times, so it’s very important to keep me in check and force myself awake on time for work every day.
2. Change out of your PJs – it doesn’t have to be into anything fancy, as long as you’re not wearing the same clothes you were sleeping in. Otherwise, you will somehow find your way right back to bed.
3. Choose a dedicated workspace – that preferably isn’t in your bedroom. Having a separate workspace also prevents the line between home and work from getting blurry.
4. Maintain real work hours – this is just as important in keeping your work life separate from your home life. Do your best to start on time as well as end on time; otherwise, you will trap yourself and find it impossible to disconnect and tune into the right thing at the right time.
5. Check-in with coworkers frequently – to stay connected and remind yourself you’re still part of a team, your work still impacts a lot of people. Additionally, communicating and collaborating with coworkers will help you get through these changes together and make it easier to check tasks off. Teamwork makes the dream work!
School From Home Tips
1. Actively participate – because it’s easy to fall behind with online classes. So, join those sessions, don’t always keep yourself on mute, make an effort to follow the PowerPoints and talk during your classes.
2. Handwrite notes during class – it will help you stay focused and pay attention to what is being said by the professor and writing things down is also an excellent way to study and retain information.
3. Use Google Hangouts – for group projects, class discussions and study sessions. You’re not alone in this, don’t let yourself go through it by yourself. Get on video or even audio calls with your friends and classmates, study with each other and go through the online experience together.
4. Set soft deadlines for yourself – so you can slowly start getting the work done for that date and then even if you procrastinate for it, you’ll be done by the time the real deadline rolls around!
5. Time and Practice makes perfect – changes aren’t always easy. Don’t be too hard on yourself, allow some time to transition and get used to the newness of online classes.
That’s it for now! These tips have worked for me so far, but everyone has their own way of learning and adjusting, so take things one day at a time, and you will be okay. Changes are scary and uncomfortably most of the time – know that you’re not in this alone.
Stay safe, take care of yourself and put yourself first <3