It’s been over a year since the pandemic broke out, and schools, colleges and many jobs continue to be held online only. As such, some people have struggled to take to their new environment even after all this time.
We have made a handy list of dos and don’ts for working or studying online. If you follow these rules for online classes or online working, you’ll definitely help make the experience as productive and seamless for you as well as your virtual colleagues or classmates. They also apply for distance learning courses or remote teaching:
Set up a home work space
Just because you’re working from home or studying on online learning platforms doesn’t mean you should work in messy conditions. If you have a corner of the home which you can convert to a dedicated work or study space, then do it. Arrange it like you would your office space or classroom table. Put notes, files and folders in convenient and easy-to-reach places.
Now that you’re at home, you can no longer blame transportation issues for being late to a meeting or classes. The only commuting you’ll have to do is from your bed to the desk after all! So be respectful of virtual meeting or class timings and don’t be late.
Figure out when you’re the most productive
When you work or study from home, you may have the freedom of choosing which time of the day you want to get the bulk of your work done. It’s no secret that some of us are early birds and others are night owls. Or there might be other commitments that keep you busy at certain times of the day – such as taking care of a family member, doing the dishes or cooking the meals.
So, figure out what suits you best and schedule your work accordingly. If, for example, you feel you’ll be able to do your best work between 7 AM and 11 AM, then schedule your most crucial tasks for that time.
List the following day’s to-dos the night before
At the end of your current work day or online class, jot down all your tasks for the following day, with timings for each task. This will let you plan your day better and help draw a clear line between work time and personal time.
Whether you’re doing home schooling or working from home, having virtual presence doesn’t mean you stay out of the discussions and don’t speak up. Make sure you do your part to make up for the lack of presence as compared to a physical office or classroom or the others will think you’re lost in your own world.
Don’t install distractions on your computer
Create a fresh Windows account exclusively for your work or studying purposes. Don’t install any unproductive apps on it that can distract you – such as games or video players. Also don’t bookmark any unproductive sites that you feel like turning to.
Don’t sit for long periods
It’s unhealthy to sit in one place for extended periods. At office or class, your friend might ask you to go out for a snack or even for a walk but at home, you might sit at your desk for hours at a stretch. This can adversely affect your health. So, ensure you schedule breaks to stretch your legs – go for a brisk walk in the neighbourhood, or even a brief home workout will do.
Don’t blame technology
If you’re working or studying from home, you’re saving money on commuting as well as from not having to eat out. So, the least you can try to do is ensure you’re not causing problems for yourself or others by having faulty technology. Maintain two internet connections if one is unreliable. Get your phone or laptop fixed if it’s constantly breaking down.
Don’t ignore family
Working from home can blur boundaries between one’s professional and personal space. Use the dos we’ve listed so far to ensure you set aside healthy amount of family time. By planning your tasks ahead of time, doing them when you work best, and having a clearly demarcated work space at home will all help you to separate work time from family time.
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