– Have a work ‘spot’, no matter how small.
Ideally you’d have a home office with a door that you could close when you’re not working. Realistically not many of us have that luxury, particularly when living in cities and renting. However having a designated spot to work from, even if it’s simply a specific side of the table, can make a huge difference to your work mentality. Having a place that you can sit that indicates ‘I’m at work’ puts you in the zone to concentrate. Avoid sitting there for other reasons, even to eat your lunch.
– Buy a TV
Reducing screen time is very much the recommendation these days, but realistically the majority of people enjoy watching a film or series at some point. But if you’ve been staring at your laptop for 10 hours for work, there’s something a bit less enjoyable about settling in to watch Netflix on the same screen. Whether you buy a state-of-the-art smart TV or something more basic, having separate devices avoids work and home bleeding into each other, keeping business business and pleasure pleasure.
Whilst we all know that long commutes can be the stuff of nightmares, we should also give them credit for the way that they break up the day. Commutes give a clear differentiation between the portion of your life that is ‘at work’ and ‘at home’. Even though you’re not going anywhere, try to incorporate a ‘commute’ into your day – leave the house first thing to go to the gym, take the dog for a walk, get a coffee or simply walk around the block. Do the same thing once you’ve stopped for the day to establish the same division in your home-working day and signal your brain to turn off or on.
– Change it up
Investigate co-working spaces or work-friendly cafes near you. There are many spaces available free of charge, or for the price of a couple of coffees. They’re a great way to maintain separation between your work and home life with the added bonus of opportunities for meeting people and networking. There’s also no need to commit – even just one day per week in a new environment does wonders for creativity and allows home to just be home.