I love working at home, but like many jobs, it’s easy to feel that each day seems monotonous. And if you need to stay at home for some reason, that feeling might feel more intense. Perhaps you aren’t an introvert like me, and the idea of staying at home makes you feel frustrated, just thinking about it. However, there are simple ways to fight the monotonous feeling. You might actually be surprised that staying at home is just as amazing as going outside.
I know that you’re probably thinking that these two words are almost what makes staying or working at home monotonous. If you stick to a schedule as if you’re going to the office, then it also gets easier for you to feel robotic. However, tackling each day without any plans is also what makes the day bland.
The idea of getting prepared and fighting off the mundane feeling might feel contradicting. But having a gist on what you have to do also gives you the chance to insert other activities to make the day at home exciting.
All of us differ in terms of what type of schedule works for them. If you work at home, chances are you are not as limited with your time. There is no traffic and commuting to worry about, so if you manage your time well, you have more time to do other things that feel less mundane.
If you notice that after lunchtime, you feel extra tired and bored, then I suggest scheduling other activities instead. If you plan out how you dissipate your tasks throughout the day, you’re doing future you a favor because he/she won’t be worried about unfinished tasks.
If you end up with lots of to-dos, then you’ll feel more drained and monotonous. On the contrary, planning out each day will allow you to be more efficient in your job without leaving you bored and uninspired.
And since we are talking about planning, why not plan an unusual activity for yourself as well. Sometimes, I indulge in buying cookware like crepe pans like these. One day, when I went to grab water in the kitchen, I ended up making myself some mean crepes that I happily devoured while writing an email. You can still be spontaneous at home! Yes, cooking is no mountain-climbing. However, being limited in being at home doesn’t have to mean that there are no more adventures for you.
Other than your day-to-day tasks, it might also help if you remind yourself of the things that you’re looking forward to—perhaps writing your vacations in the calendar in your work area. Or maybe a simple goal in the whiteboard besides the door. They don’t have to be grand, but the idea here is just to give you something to boost your mood and inspiration.
Take Your Breaks
While I do enjoy my alone time at home, it can still be difficult to get productive. And even if I have the urge to procrastinate, I always feel bad. However, what I learned is that I need those breaks and procrastination to fight the mundane feeling.
What you need to do is to procrastinate smartly. As I have mentioned earlier, you are giving the future you a head start by looking out for him/her. You can do this by doing the tasks that you have to do. Of course, it’s also easier said than done. But if you segregate your duties smartly, it’s very easy.
For example, there are chores and tasks that you can do in autopilot. They do not require a complex thinking process to do, so that you can handle them in a short period of time. You can use this extra time to take a break, try some hobbies, or just indulge in being lazy.
You will feel less monotonous staying or working at home if you are in the right mood in doing things. What I mean by this is that you should work when you feel productive and inspired. Otherwise, take a break, whether it’s a nap or a quick read of your favorite book. When you feel the productivity coming back, take this opportunity, and do your tasks until you don’t feel like making them anymore.
However, I am aware that this isn’t going to be easy for certain works and lifestyles. So instead, stick to what I’ve said earlier and segregate your tasks. The harder tasks can take the time where you are in the proper mood, and the autopilot tasks can be done any time.
Have Some Rituals
Whether you are working at home or simply stuck at home, it’s easy to let the sluggishness in the morning last throughout the whole day. It’s because you can predict what is going to happen throughout the day, so there’s no excitement anymore.
Starting some rituals is different from sticking to a routine. Yes, you have to lay down your tasks for each day. But it makes the days less dull if you put in some unique activities for yourself. It’s nice to be consistent because it leads to less stress, but every now and then, you need to do something stimulating.
For example, maybe there are days in the week where you intend to learn a new skill or lesson. You can still get out of your comfort zone even if you’re in the comfort of your own home. There are various websites where you can learn skills and even take courses for free. But if this sounds too serious for you, you can pursue a hobby that feels fun and exhilarating.
However, remember not to take yourself too seriously, and don’t set unrealistic expectations on yourself. You are fighting the boredom and mundane, but you are also not trying to put yourself in a state of self-doubt.
Overall, being at home doesn’t have to be monotonous. There are simple approaches that you can do to fight the mundane feeling. And if you are someone who loves the indoors more than the outdoors, you wouldn’t find it difficult to find the joys even if you’re stuck at home.