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Best practices for working from home

 

Working from home can feel quite lonely, frustrating and boring. Thousands of people across the UK, and millions all over the world, are now locked into a new way of working for the first time. So, if you’re now working from home here are a few tips to help get you through this time.

Use the best video calling platforms

There are so many video conferencing platforms available from Facebook to Google to Skype. But what’s the best? 

Zoom meeting’ available on Mac, WindowsLinux, iOS and Android, this platform boasts “unparalleled usability” with HD audio and video, recordings and transcripts, streamlined calendars and built-in collaboration tools. As a free to use app, you can’t go wrong with Zoom meetings. 

Microsoft’s Skype offers a lot of the same features as Zoom meeting, however it lacks streamlined calendars and a few built-in collaboration tools offered by its rival. Skype can be built-in to your browser without installing it. This means you’re not going to have as many windows opened up on your screen and reduce the amount of power used.

Google Hangouts is a staple of video conferencing and for good reason. This app is connected to your Google calendar, in which you can see what everyone in your team or company has on that day. A staggering 150 people can join a Google Hangout, whereas Zoom meetings offer up to 100 and Skype up to 50. 

All of these platforms offer HD audio and video and built-in screen sharing.

Get out and stay fit

It’s easy to get into a habit of staying in and not being active when you’re working from home. As we are still allowed to get out of the house once a day make sure to benefit from this as it helps you, both physically and mentally. 

Being outside whether you’re walking down a street or getting your daily jog done in the park makes you feel better, especially as we’re moving into the Springtime.

An easy thing to do is just taking a walk. Sometimes taking that first step, whether it’s walking away from your desk or off the couch is the hardest one. 

Opening up your door and stepping out into the world can be amazing as you get natural sunlight, fresh air and get your body moving. When you go to a park for your daily exercise or to the shop, it makes you feel like you’re a part of the world again.

Listening to music or a podcast whilst exercising can also further benefit your mental wellbeing. 

Music gives this walk outside a soundtrack, creating a sense of escapism through becoming how the music makes us feel. Podcasts create a sense of community through feeling like you’re part of a conversation or debate. Through podcasts this opens up your brain to new ideas and new perspectives on issues. Providing not only learning, but mental exercise as well. 

This makes the time pass faster as your focus is on the conversation and not the walk itself. Popular podcasts include Happy Place, Off Menu, The Joe Rogan Experience and even Desert Island Discs have a shorter version of their broadcast in a podcast format.

 

Give yourself a break

Working from home doesn’t mean always working. 

For some it’s easy to get trapped into constantly checking our phones for emails or messages regarding work. 

Living in this non-stop cycle of waking up, getting dressed, making a cuppa, working and then sleeping is not healthy. Taking regular breaks is important to boost your mood and your productivity. It gives your brain time to rest, reset and rethink. 

Messaging a friend or family member can really help boost your mood, making you remember that life isn’t all about work. Putting your favourite song on whilst making a cuppa gives you a mood boost also, resetting your mind by making you more productive when you get back to work.

Conclusion

Unless you’re a key worker, working from home will be the norm for the foreseeable future. But in this digital age there are many ways to connect and stay in touch with people. The weather is getting warmer so make the most of it with your permitted daily exercise. Listen to podcasts and music to boost your mood and add some fun into your day. We are all in this together and must stay connected to each other and the outside world.

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