Overclockers 5 easy to follow tips and tricks for working at home
Working remotely can pay off extremely well for some people and it does have many benefits. However, due to the current situation, many of you who are accustomed to employment in a traditional office might suddenly have to adapt to working at home. Trying to be productive at home is a new experience that creates its own challenges with the possibility of noisy neighbors, your steam library just a click away and your pet becoming a huge distraction.
Here at Overclockers UK, a decent portion of the staff are now completing the daily workload at our gaming PC’s, via VPN or on a laptop in our living room. Therefore we would like to share some easy to follow, helpful tips and tricks with everyone who might suddenly find themselves in the same situation.
Separate Work and Play:
The boundary between working hours and relaxation time can blur very easily when you don’t have to travel. If you have the opportunity, you should set up your workspace so that it’s comfortable and ergonomic, but can be hidden away after your work hours are over.
If you lie on the sofa in the evening and have your "office" in view, you might not switch off properly. You don’t need a dedicated room either as covering your desk, laptop or monitors with a blanket can help. Also be mindful where you work, although it can be tempting to use your laptop while sitting in bed or in front of the TV it stops you from getting into the correct mindset and your productivity will suffer.
Regular breaks with time away from the screen are very beneficial to workflow. Your company might already have this set for you so ensure you take them in their entirety. When it comes to scheduling your own breaks pay attention to how you feel and try taking shorter breaks more regularly to help yourself get back in the right mindset.Use this time to get up and move around, make yourself some food, call a friend or get some fresh air if possible. Being shut in without stopping for a break can mean you become tired, sluggish and less motivated to complete what you're working on.
Communication is key:
Feelings of Loneliness and isolation can start to creep in if you’re used to socialising at work on a regular basis. Find ways to get that interaction remotely with programs like discord, skype, WhatsApp or messenger. It’s likely you’re not the only one having a hard time so take action and set up a group chat to keep everyone connected. You could even organise a gaming session with some of your colleagues at lunchtime.
Good communication is also very important for workflow. Let everyone know what you’re working on and how things are progressing. If you’ve finished a project or nailed that deadline say so! Find software that works for your team to keep things organised and everyone on track. Overclockers use Asana but there are plenty of useful tools out there. You might also find yourself taking part in a lot more conference calls so it’s important to have an acceptable webcam, clear microphone, and comfortable headset. Use meeting time wisely to ask any questions that wouldn’t work in an email and be an active participant so everyone knows you're on the call and staying focused.
If you're a gaming enthusiast it’s likely you’ve put a lot of time and money into your PC and enjoy countless hours on evenings and weekends raking up kill streaks or slaying bosses. It’s likely this same gaming PC is now powering spreadsheets and conference calls with your games library merely a click away.
To avoid the temptation of “just a quick one” during working hours it can be advantageous to create a second account on the computer. Block your game collection and keep this account as strictly business only. You might also want to consider signing out of all social media and silencing your phone to avoid excessive notifications.
For many, traveling to work and back is the only movement you might have all day. Those 3 flights of stairs to the office or walking to get your lunch can all add up. At the same time, many gyms are beginning to close and your regular routine could be severely disrupted. It’s easy to become lazy and stay comfy in your office chair but you can also get moving at home.
The internet and especially YouTube offers great exercises that you can even do in your living room. It might also be worth investing in an exercise bike, 30 minutes a day can help keep you fit and clear your mind. Also, the possible lack of exercise means that the body uses less "fuel". You can counteract this by trying to adapt your diet. Working from home also means you have more time to create healthy lunches with fresh ingredients.