Things aren’t always as they appear when you’re working from home…
Elizabeth Pich, half of the team behind War and Peas, created this comic for Toggl.
Working from home may seem like the perfect solution to many of your workplace woes, but one significant downside is how easily work time bleeds into home time. Living rooms become workrooms, and the temptation of working in the bedroom is often too much to resist.
Setting aside a dedicated space for work can be a solution. However, the question of mental space remains. Work isn’t only the time you spend typing away on a laptop. The time you spend thinking about your work is also, in its own way, a form of work; you’re expending your time and emotional energy on something other than your personal needs. Everyone needs and deserves a break to let your mind wander.
That’s why leaving your house when you work from home is crucial. Being a cooped up remote worker is simple, but convincing yourself that the outside world is worth visiting can be difficult, especially when all the comforts of home are constantly in reach.
When you do venture out, mute or delete any work-related applications from your phone. It’s not an actual break if you’re checking your email or responding to messages, no matter how quickly you’re able to do it.
You should also monitor your thinking patterns. Are there moments when your mind wanders to tasks you need to complete or a message your coworker sent? Acknowledge those thoughts and consider how they make you feel. Are you stressed by incomplete tasks? When you start thinking about them, look around you. Think about your surroundings, take a deep breath of the air, consider the things within your field of view.
Too often, we focus on a hypothetical future rather than the present. If the thoughts keep reappearing after you reposition your thinking, write them down. Keeping a record of them will help your brain relax.
Not Ready To Start Working Again?
You’re in luck! We’ve got even more comics! If you’re a frequent traveler, you may want to check out our guide to using lifehacking (aka common sense) to make your airport experience 250% more pleasant. We’ve also used dinosaurs to explain the different issues freelancers deal with when working with clients.
We’ve also done a piece about how the world might be a little different if it were created by a programmer. If that sort of thing is your jam, you may also enjoy The Unicorn Startup Simulator – a highly realistic, gravely immoral game about life in the gritty startup scene of Silicon Valley.