I now have 3 areas in my house set up quite well for productive / proper work!
I used to only be able to work in my bedroom (been working remotely) but then gets boring and dangerous for risk of burnout. Now I can switch around between my bedroom, my brother’s old bedroom, and the space in front of my room I currently use as home gym
It takes me 2 years to realise (and only now, articulated) that basically, these are the basic mandatory requirements I have for any place to do focused work:
- a desk that allows me to work on the laptop comfortably
- air circulation and temperature (you can hack this with what you wear. get creative)
- water within reach
- permission to ignore people around you
// see tangent 2
These are nice-to-haves (never been too much of a trouble to have around the house):
– internet connection
– charging station
And this is bonus:
– weight / barbells. for short breaks. better squeeze in some reps and movements
Being aware of these would allow me to start shaping a new space or consciously deciding whether I can work. e.g. now I always look for some semblance of a desk in the listing images when I’m looking for places to stay when I’m travelling.
Every once in a while it occurs to me that 1) I can improve the situation and 2) the fix is simple.
- moved an unused fan to the home gym area. better temp and air circulation.
- repurposed the couple of old boxes and tray to create a desk there
- bought a cheap electric kettle and put a mug in my brother’s old bedroom
- accumulated water bottles over some period and kept them around the house. refilling these bottles also give me a chance for cardio. and the 5-10 minutes I spend weekly washing them are quite meditative
- disassembled some dumbells, packed some backpacks with books and I now have three different variation of weights in each area.
Which led me to my first point: more people can benefit from a little environment hacking.
These are generally true:
- our memory ~~is pathetic~~ has limited capacity. out of sight out of mind.
- we have blindspots. we adapt to our environment and take things the way they are, not realising we can actually change things.
Tiny changes can make a big difference
- keeping a couple extra water bottles in each room can help you drink more water.
- leaving your phone charged in another room can help you get more sleep or stay focused longer
- getting a bluetooth earphone could get you through more 30 minutes jog by listening to that 1.5 hour long podcast you’ve been saving or lecture on your Youtube Watch Later queue
And this goes in another direction as well.
If you want to reduce processed food and sugar, then don’t let them into your house! I know this point has been made hundreds of times, but it’s worth raising again.
Because most things are simple but not easy. We know but we don’t do. And that’s normal.
Try noticing the “just the way things are” and see how you can poke them
Yes we need some structure to function (~~embrace chaos embrace change~~), but many things are more malleable than we think.
if you don’t feel like making the change just yet then notice it as well and try suggesting it to yourself again another time. you’ll learn a lot about yourself this way.
Change of scene is nice every once in a while to keep you motivated and inspired, especially in times of covid-19 quarantime like these.
The biggest piece to working from home successfully is actually: permission to ignore anyone walking around. I think this is the biggest struggle I have being a people pleaser. the fix is not that simple but earphone and patience to repeat helps :sweat_smile:
- Draft of this post can be found at: http://proses.id:5417/s/ILLhW8Q72
Also published on Medium.