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Get the most out of working from home

How to maximize productivity while away from the office
Credit: Getty Images

NORFOLK, Va. — Many of us are now working from home, at least for the foreseeable future.

That’s our new reality during the COVID-19 pandemic.

But not everyone is used to, or even comfortable with, working away from the office.

We’ve compiled some tips to help you go about it the most efficient, most productive and healthiest way possible.

For starters, make it feel like work. That means you should stick to your schedule, maintain regular hours, and get dressed as if you were actually going to leave the house. It sounds simple, but dialing into that professional mindset, mentally and physically, is how you avoid distractions and increase productivity.

You should also create a designated workspace.

If you don’t have a home office, you can use a corner in your bedroom. Just try to avoid slinking down on the couch all day.

A spot by the window helps us feel a little less isolated, too- a reminder there’s still a world out there.

If you’re someone who thrives on the office structure, it may be a good idea to invest in a computer or tablet application.  There are a lot of good tools out there to keep people focused at home. Serene is one of them. The app helps you set a daily goal, block distractions like social media sites, and offers focus enhancers like music and countdown timers to keep you on track.

It’s also important to establish a start-work and end-work routine. In the morning, it can be as easy as making yourself a cup of coffee.

At the end of the day, you could take your dog for a walk.

The idea is to set parameters and signal to your brain that it is time to start work and it is time to end work. Otherwise, you can fall into place where the lines between work life and home life are blurred. That’s not healthy for any of us.