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Working From Home On Snow Days

Working from Home on Snow Days

Here in the UK, we tend to go into a flurry the second we see a drop of snow. The roads cover with ice, our cars get snowed in, and suddenly, an unexpected work from home day is upon us. Whilst post-pandemic life made working from home the norm for many people, some of us are unaccustomed and don’t entirely know where to start. 

Here’s our tips and tricks to work from home on snow days – from someone stuck at home on a snow day.

Setting Your Environment 

You may feel overwhelmed at first trying to navigate your work day from a place you’re not used to. Or you might struggle to figure out how to work productively without the comfort of your office environment. So, the first port-of-call is creating a dedicated space, free from distraction.

If you have the option, set up your work space away from your usual ‘relaxation spots’. Avoid sofas and beds at all costs – even having them in view could be a temptation that you’re not quite strong enough to ignore. Of course an office is the ideal choice, but a dining table also works as a functional working from home space if you set it up well enough. 

Get yourself dressed. I know it’s tempting to stay wrapped up in your pyjamas, particularly on cold snowy days. But, you’ll never get into the work mindset if you’re snuggly. Getting dressed and starting the day as you usually would will get your brain ready for the day. Of course you must stay in your slippers. 

Surround yourself with a similar environment to that of your office. Unless you don’t work well in your office of course. If you’re used to having the radio on, pop it on! Set up your diary or notepad beside you, and have water at easy access. Essentially, everything you would usually have at hands reach at work, have it there at home too. Unfortunately working from home means that it’s your turn to brew up, every time. But at least it will be a small round.

Preparing Your Desktop

Spend the first 15 minutes of your day logging into all your necessary platforms; emails, portals, and other accounts. Try to log into everything you may need at once so that you have it out of the way. Getting this part done first will ensure smooth sailing later on, and it will almost feel like you’re back on your work desktop. 

Schedule Your Working From Home Day 

Start your day right with a structured schedule. Write a clear plan for the day, with your tasks laid out. Adding the times you want to have them completed can also help you keep on track. 

Sticking to your usual work schedule is a key part to keeping your day as productive as possible. And feeling as much like a ‘normal’ work day. This includes fitting in breaks. When working from home, it’s easy to feel guilty for taking a break, worrying that you’re not doing enough out of office. But taking a break doesn’t mean that you’re up to snow good. It’s part of the work day, in or out of office. No one can work for 8 hours without a 5 minute brain pause. 

Using your lunch break to go for a walk (if possible with the weather of course), will also help to separate up the day and give you a reason to leave the house. This is particularly important if you end up having multiple snow days. Otherwise your days may merge into one, and before you know it, you’ve not left the house in 3 days. That’s a surefire way to burnout and have unproductive days.

Communicate!

Lastly, communication is key. Just because you’re out of the office, it doesn’t mean that you should be disconnected. Call your team in the morning after planning your tasks. This means you can discuss your day, ensure you have the means to complete it and add in any more essential tasks. 

Finishing off the day with a round up email can help to keep your team in the loop, and fill them in with what you managed to complete. It can also give both you and them the reassurance that you’ve had a productive day.

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