5 Things You Need To Know About Working From Home

Fun fact, I was an independent consultant for over 17 years before I agreed to work for GIGABYTE Notebooks. You see, I was one of the early adopters of the internet economy, why did I stop being my own boss? Cause I'm a tech nerd who has always wanted to work in tech and I love, love, love the laptops I get to work and play with here, and it was time for something new. That being said, as I watch all of the work from home orders, school closures and quarantine notices get broadcasted on my Twitter feed (go ahead and give us a follow on Twitter to stay up to date), I've been thinking, "How ironic, I finally go back to a 9-5 and people end up having to work from home."

After the first couple of heady days of being able to walk around in no pants, working from home can end up a challenge for people not used to the lack of structure. There's no one watching you, there's no official break or lunch time, and there are a ton of distractions. Not to mention if you're worried about the state of the world, family health concerns, or other things in general, It's easy to lose focus. Here's the deal, I've worked from home in boom and bust times, during major life transitions and personal tragedies, and there are a few things you need to know in order to keep moving forward.

1. Use Productivity Apps To Stay On Track

Whether you're using Asana, Google Calendar, Gantt charts or you use something else at work, make sure you keep using it at home. No, you will not remember to do it later, in fact you're more likely to forget more outside of your office setting. Especially if your family members or roommates are also at home, there's just more distraction happening. Plus, you don't have your favorite (or not so favorite) co-workers or supervisors reminding you of those less desirable tasks. I've used Asana for years to stay on track of projects and monster todo lists and prefer using it in calendar mode, that way I miss nothing. I still use it on the job here at Gigabyte and give my team access so there's transparency on who's doing what. (Hint for remote teams... it helps everyone to stay on track.)

2. Create A Schedule - Now.

A simple schedule will help you stay focused, and for your mental health, don't check the news first thing. I stopped doing that sometime in the early 2000's and never looked back. I get up, shower, get dressed, take the dog out, have coffee and start my day out relaxed. I don't check email until 9 am, I don't look at the news until lunch time, I only check email at 9 am, 11 am, 2 pm, and at 5pm - yup, four times a day. The rest of the time I'm writing, editing video, shooting video, in meetings, or writing reports. I do not work through lunch, that's me time, I don't work past dinner time, that's me time, I do not work on days off, that's me time. Oh, because I work for a company? Again, I started this policy in the mid-2000's. After all, I worked for myself, and if I didn't make a time off policy it was work all day, everyday and that spells burnout. Don't do it. Make a schedule and let it work for you.

3. Self Care Is Essential

Look, it's crazy out there in the world right now. If you're going to stock up on things, besides TP, grab some comfort food and make sure you have access to things that make you feel good. Whether you're into watching movies, reading books, or taking long Epsom salts baths or drinking piping hot cup