No commute, longer lie-ins and staying in your PJ’s all day? While working from home seems an attractive proposition initially, it’s certainly no holiday and being productive is harder than you think.
If you are fortunate enough to have a job which enables you to work from the safety of your own home in these unprecedented times, it's important to stay motivated, healthy and keep yourself as calm and productive as possible – which can be easier said than done.
Whilst working from home, we should take this as an opportunity to recuperate, indulge in some extra self-care and be kind to ourselves.
We’ve shared six top tips to help make working from home as effective and stress-free as possible.
1. Keep your routine
Happiness when working from home depends on forming a clear routine. The appeal of staying in bed an extra 10 minutes on a Monday morning is attractive now more than ever, but just because we're not commuting to work in the office doesn’t mean we should skip our morning preparations. We've found that keeping to a routine will help you mentally prepare for the day ahead and get in the right headspace, so get up at your normal time, shower, get dressed – as you would for work – and have a nourishing breakfast before setting down at your designated work-space to start your day. You’ll feel better, trust us!
2. A comforting companion
Keeping your beloved pet nearby will provide company and companionship during your long working hours. A cat curled up on your lap or dog cuddled up at your feet will instantly provide a calming influence. Studies have shown that pets help boost our sense of well-being and reduce our stress levels – just make sure you don’t schedule meetings which coincide with the postman!
Pictured is Percy, a miniature dachshund curled up on Sara-Jayne’s lap (our Marketing Assistant) and cat Smokey helping Helen, our Financial Controller, with her work.
3. Stay connected
Social distancing is hard. Going from a busy office environment to your own home combined with a lack of communication with the outside world is a big adjustment. Luckily, with modern technology it’s easier than ever to stay in touch with colleagues and work associates, enabling important business meetings to go ahead and ease of communication between your team. Instant messaging and video calling tools make it easy to check in with co-workers and remind you how your work is contributing to the big picture.
Don't forget to check in with friends and loved ones too, social connections are important now more than ever. Even though we have to keep a physical distance, it’s important to maintain social connections both inside and outside of work.
Here at St. Eval, we communicate regularly via Microsoft Teams, maintaining daily updates and video meetings to help us all stay connected. We also have a Facebook group, to keep us communicating outside of work too by sharing the activities which are keeping us engaged and healthy.
4. Take regular breaks
While working from home, it can be incredibly easy to just fall into a pattern of working straight through lunch and dinner, but don’t underestimate the power of taking clear breaks; they will help keep you motivated, refreshed and recharged. Why not take your breaks outside in your garden and enjoy the fresh air and sun on your face? From your morning coffee sitting on the patio to lunchtime dog walks around your local area – as part of your daily exercise, of course. A different perspective will also help undo mental blocks and give you a fresh pair of eyes for any tasks you're struggling with.
Pictured is Misty the cat who sits with owner Nicky, our Customer Service Administrator, as she enjoys lunch in her sunny garden.
5. Exercise, meditate and don’t forget to breathe
Movement is important for both mental and physical health. With no morning commute or walking around the office, it’s important to maintain a healthy exercise regime. Whether you go for a run, do some stretches in your garden, breathe deeply during a session of yoga or prefer some quiet meditation, don't forget to take care of your mind and body.
A simple walk around your local area will make the most of your daily dose of exercise and fill your lungs with fresh air. Breathing deeply means more oxygen to the brain and body and helps us focus, destress and deal with the chaos and potential anxieties that are high in our communities right now.
6. Elevate your workspace with your favourite scented candle
Candles can help create a calm space to encourage creativity, deep focus and increased productivity. Smell is a strong sense, powerfully acting on the limbic part of our brain which controls emotions, memories and stimulation. When we surround ourselves with beautiful scents, especially those from nature, we can evoke wonderful feelings, improving our wellbeing, productivity and happiness.
The right fragrances can help keep you relaxed, motivated and focused. Explore our website and discover your perfect home office scent, from soothing Lavender, uplifting Bergamot & Nettle, fresh and zesty Grapefruit & Lime and soothing herbal favourite Bay & Rosemary.
Surround yourself with calming and relaxing aromas and combine with mindful breathing techniques – simply breathe in through your nose for 7 seconds and out through your mouth slowly for 11 seconds.
Embrace this new normal...
It can be hard to separate work and life, especially when they’re both happening in the same place. Embrace this new way of working by creating a tranquil and uplifting environment to help you remain focused and not forgetting to look after your health and well-being. If you are working from home and are using our candles to help boost your productivity, we'd love to see pictures of your homeworking set-up. Please share and tag us on social @stevalcandles.
Cover picture credit: @alicenightingaledesign, featuring our Wild Gorse Hedgerow candle.