By: Melody Rabor-Dizon
7 months into this work from home routine either is killing you or making you. Each person’s personality can tell whether you are a work- fromhome type or the go-to-office type. One person’s productivity booster can be another’s distracting disaster. As remote workforce is gaining traction during this time of pandemic, your ability to focus on work in either location – be it from home or from office, isn’t as highly considered as your productivity and outcome at work. It will do more good in your professional experience when time comes.
If you are the type of person that need things done on a timeframe, strong willed and goal oriented, the workplace can be anywhere for you. Even if you are in the office or at home, you will still be working. However, the majority is nowhere near this category. For the most part, people work more efficiently when they are in their zone, their own desk and their office. They love to be with their co-workers, having same meal/coffee breaks, meet other people, dress up and eat out.
Given we are where we are, if the type of job you have is something that can be done anywhere other than the workplace setting, you are lucky enough to work from home. In the same way, if the type of job you have is something that can be done anywhere other than the workplace setting, you are unfortunate enough because you have nowhere to work but home. So what is working for you???
Here are gathered benefits from telecommuting:
1. Flexible schedule. You can start at different time frames, if allowed. You can take breaks at any moment and have lunch with your family. You’d feel no need to rush on conversation especially if it’s a personal one.
2. Custom environment. I can blast my radio and even sing with the performer. I can make my workspace warm or cold. I can situate my desk by the window where I can see life outside my 4 walled space.
3. Cozy clothes. I can wear pajamas all day or wear what I want to wear and not be stressed out if I need to layer up because it’s snowing outside.
4. It’s easier to make calls. If and only if you can control the noise level with in your space, like your child is not screaming on top of his lungs or dogs barking or neighbor mowing the front yard. Otherwise, your house will be the perfect conference room.
5. Knock off some weekend to-do’s. Like my piles of laundry to do or getting a new plant from the nursery, only because I can do those during mg breaks.
6. No office distractions. An annoying and loud co-worker, faulty heater or AC or multiple phones going off at the same time. NOISE pollution clouds the mind.
7. Zero commuting. Oh, the few steps to my bathroom and the kitchen, the only traffic I’ll get into is when other family members do so at the same time as me.
8. Save money. Haven’t been to the mall since forever as I have to physically change and drive there instead of just stopping by after work. Home cooked meals of course has allowed me to appreciate other people’s cooking.
9. Forget crowds and traffic. Having to wait in line to get your train ticket. Rubbing elbows with people and squeezing tightly on the train who are also headed home my way. The insane scent of people- be it overly-perfumed- grandma-smell or someone with B.O. No, thank you.
10. More time with loved ones. If there is anything that I truly love during this work-from- home deal, is the fact that I get to see my kids every day, spend time with my spouse without having to strangle each other, be able to talk to my 21 year olds who thinks I don’t have a clue with what’s going on. It’s actually pretty funny. Regardless of those, I wouldn’t want to trade my time with them. However, there is a thin and gray line that I need to put out there. Not all is easy peasy.
1. Willpower. You must have a strong willpower to turn off watching all teleseryes all day long. We still have to work even though we are in our most comfortable joggers.
2. Difficulty sticking to a routine. AHA, hence my scheduler reminder SIRI gets involved. For the most part, I oblige what she tells me as I programmed her to be. I know for many this is difficult since you are not in your normal zone.
3. Missing important calls or pings. This inly happens at night time for me when all my gadgets are silenced. However, some of you may have missed your coworkers text, reminding you of the office meeting in 15 minutes because the volume for the ringer was turned down low.
4. Calling UberEats anyways. Only and only because, my palate wants something new for a change. You get my drift? Sometimes, I must admit I cave in to that potbelly sandwhich and a click away you go, they come knocking at your door. So much for saving money there.
5. Power naps. This I will not trade for the world as well. It’s important that I take those cat naps since I also work till wee hours in the morning. But if your naps last 2 hours at a time, it may be a disadvantage for you working remotely.
6. Boredom. Not in the DIZON household. Everyone is alive and loud. There are always people coming over to the house. My house has been the party house, go to house for the teenagers in my hood. Maybe for some of you, this is a challenge.
7. Working slowly. Your work rhythm isn’t as high as when you are in the office. You see, we affect people and tend to gravitate and mold towards a goal the office has set.
8. No second monitor. One day I will want to have this luxury, together with my aerodynamics handheld wireless mouse, ergonomic ball chair for proper posture.
9. Iffy WiFi. I don’t have this issue at home, maybe if you live near a dead spot area, train stations then that would be a death sentence for me.
10. Waiting for an answer. Maybe if the decision maker or whoever needs to answer your question isn’t visible, it won’t be as easy as going to them and say, hey should I be submitting this proposal to Ed or Joe? And they respond right away and not wait for an email or call back.
So to know who you are:
1. If you are the type that can stay focused, are self-motivated, adheres to a routine well, enjoy minimal distractions, knows when to get back on track, knows how you best communicate, then working from home is the right choice for you.
• If you thrive on social interactions, feel inspired by seeing others working, and stay on track best if others see you, then working from the office is the way to go.
Either way, as homo sapiens, it is in our nature to have FOMO (fear of missing out) at Home or FOMO (fear of missing out) at Work. Somehow, we always wonder what’s going on on the other side.
Bottom line is:
Know thy self first – it’s a good self-checker for evaluation of oneself knowing what kind of environment best suits you, where are you are most likely to perform or be successful at what you are doing.
I know we all have our own preferences, at this time it’s calling us to “bloom where we are put”. It may not be the best scenario but given what we have to deal with as a nation, knowing what matters the most, prioritizing our health, our safety and others, we will rise above this. Accepting one’s evaluation of self, there are tools we can put in place so we will be productive where we are. Acknowledging areas where our weak spots are, knowing how to tackle them is necessary. Adapting to current situation is actually brain healthy. It’s making and molding us to be more flexible as a person, learning more about ourselves, build experience and be a professional in whatever setting we are put in, not the most ideal but a valuable life lesson to be learned. It’s important as well to be able to mix things up, depending on where we think we’ll be most productive. After all, it isn’t about the location where you did your work but more on how and what was done despite and inspite of the circumstance. GOD BLESS US ALL.