COVID-19 has proven that flexible working is possible in more roles than ever imagined. For many businesses who saw the value of home working, there is no going back to business as usual.
Where it works, the benefits are clear for employees and employers alike. However, there is one key challenge – maintaining a healthy work-life balance. As many home workers are asking themselves the same question: Do I work at home, or do I live at work?
So how do we strike a better balance? Here are some tips that you may find helpful.
1) Create a routine & add structure to your day
When home working you may lose some of the structure that an office gives you. Having a routine and more structure to your day is the perfect antidote.
Try to give your working day some structure, whether it’s getting dressed for work as usual (even when you don’t have a video call) or remembering to eat a healthy lunch. Your routine should work for you, not against you.
2) Clock out on time
One of the many benefits of home working is there is no rush hour or the daily commute to contend with. The downside of this is that many of us will often work beyond our hours.
This can be draining and impact your productivity & performance, make a conscious effort to disconnect both mentally and physically. Avoid the urge to keep checking your emails outside of working hours – they can wait until the next working day.
Employers gain more benefit from having you well rested at peak performance than they do from you driving on empty.
3) Get moving & take breaks
It’s far too easy to stay still and not move when home working. Try to remind yourself to take short breaks as you would in the office.
By getting up and moving you’re improving your physical and mental health. Staying stationary for too long is bad for you, so set a reminder on your phone if you have to so that you don’t forget.
4) Stay social
Reach out to your team and talk and not just about work-related stuff! The truth is, home working can be rough on our mental health and feel lonely to some people if done wrong.
Don’t lose touch with your team, whether it’s by email or by phone have a quick natter.
5) Define your workspace
Having a set desk or office space where you work from can help you keep your work life and your home life separate. Most importantly, don’t work where you sleep – regardless of how warm and cosy it may be.
By working in a set place each day it can help you to switch off and be happier and healthier.
6) Juggle your work & home responsibilities
Working from home isn’t always simple, especially if you’re a parent or carer. Communicate these struggles to your employer and ask for more flexible hours if appropriate.
Depending on the nature of your role you may find that your boss is more open to the idea than you might think. Whether it’s starting earlier, starting later or working out your time based on interruptions it’s worth a conversation.
Working from home and insurance
Most insurers have been making allowances throughout the coronavirus pandemic to cater for the increase in people working from home. However, this depends on the nature of what you are doing. If in any doubt it’s best to check your cover and contact your insurers. It’s worth remembering that if this flexible way of working becomes the norm for you long term then you may need to notify your insurers.
We can assist you with all things from business insurance to personal insurance. Call our friendly team on 01527 874092 – we will work with you to find cover based on your needs.