It’s realistic to assume that shifting to the ‘home office’ will become the new normal for many of us for a while, given the recent announcement by the World Health Organisation that the coronavirus has officially reached ‘pandemic’ status.Everyone who works remotely must figure out when to work, where to work, and how to create boundaries between work life and personal life. What about office equipment, career development and training opportunities, and building relationships with colleagues? Working remotely, especially when working from home most of the time, means grappling with these issues and others

Start and end your day with a routine

Create a routine to start and end your day. Create a habit that signals the start and close of the workday. An example is get dressed, make a coffee before you sit down or close your computer and listen to your favourite podcast at the end of the day. It needs to be like arriving and leaving your place of work, otherwise it will all blur too much.

Maintain Regular Hours

Set a schedule and stick to it…most of the time. Having clear guidelines for when to work and when to call it a day helps many remote workers maintain work-life balance. Deciding you’ll sit down at your desk and start work at a certain time is also important.

Set Ground Rules with the people in your space

Set ground rules with other people in your home or who share your space for when you work. If you have children home, they need clear rules about what they can and cannot do during that time.

Create a dedicated working space

It is important to create a dedicated workspace someone where in your home. Ideally a place that you can shut the door at the end of the day, or clear away your work equipment is the space needs to be within the living part of your home.

Schedule Breaks

Know your company’s policy on break times and take them. If you’re self-employed, give yourself adequate time during the day to walk away from the computer screen and phone.

‘Keep spirits up’

Make no mistake, these are stressful times. Negative headlines, worrying about sick or elderly loved ones and fighting the urge to panic buy can put answering work emails on the back burner. But the more effort you put into communicating with colleagues, the better chance you have of avoiding feelings of isolation.