How do you stay productive while maintaining your personal time?
I create work hours for myself and try to stick to a routine. Although I have flexible hours during the lock-down, a structured time enables me to ‘walk away’ after a day’s work. I informed my employers and colleagues that I am only available during those hours. Of course, this is within reason, and I make sure to keep my work up-to-date. This gives me the time to ‘shut-down’. Having to attend to phone calls or emails in my offline time puts me right back into working mode. One of my colleagues who has young children, organizes his working day around their needs, opting to work early mornings and late evenings. He says that this works for him if he sticks to his routine.
How do you make sure that you maintain your own schedule?
I shut my computer down when my workday ends. There is always more work to do, and this forces me to walk away. I won’t be tempted to check on work when I see my computer on my way to do something else.
Do you have any other tips for your home ‘office’?
Having a designated workspace is essential. I like to keep everything neat and organized as if I am at the office. This helps me to create a productive space. I can also physically distance myself from my workspace at the end of the day.
How do you balance your online social/work obligations with your offline family/personal time?
I schedule my social online meetings in advance. Not only does this give me something to look forward to, but it lets others know when I am available. I realized that online socials are very different from physically going out with friends. After spending an entire workday in front of the computer, I need to prioritize my offline time. This also gives me a chance to spend time with my wife. We organize online meetings with our relatives every weekend. During the lockdown, we have been checking in with them more often than before.
What do you do in your offline time?
I try to do fun things offline, like reading a book or exercising. It gives my body time to rest away from the computer. I used to watch series all the time, but now I do things offline. We’ve recently started playing board games again, and I can recommend it.