5 Tips For Unblurring The Blurred Boundaries Of Remote Work

Ah, the joys of remote work. Who wouldn’t want to work where they want, when they want, from a private home office (if you have the space), wearing their favorite pajama bottoms?

With companies turning to remote and hybrid work arrangements on a permanent basis, there’s no better time to master the art of WFH.

Unfortunately, if you’re used to office work you likely have some struggles. There are family interruptions, the high potential for distractions, the loneliness factor, and the pressure or pull to be constantly “on.”

Here are 5 tips for unblurring blurred WFH boundaries:

1 If you have a lot of job autonomy, break down longer term goals by month, week, and daily. Having a clearly defined performance target and knowing when “enough is enough” enhances motivation and sense of accomplishment. Better yet, share your goals with a colleague and support each other.

2 Treat yourself. Have something to look forward to when make good on your goals, even the daily ones. Not only does this mark the transition between work and non-work hours, it’s also a motivational tactic pulling us out of avoidance and procrastination.

3 Block time on your calendar for high priority focused work and remove all distractions. Our brains perform at their best when we are laser focused. I recommend setting aside a certain time aside daily if you can. This means turning off notifications and being off your email and phone.

4 Define your terms within your constraints. Don’t like checking email in the evening? Would it help to have a few mornings a week where your partner handles the kids? Don’t think you need to be in every meeting? Try designing your workday from blank slate, and have the conversations needed to to make it happen. Even if it’s not totally up to you, you won’t know if you don’t ask. That said, I often find with clients that their assumptions about constraints are just that — assumptions — rather than fact. Know whether you need to simply communicate or convince.

5 Take time to eat and move. Remind yourself you have a body so you don’t become a blob. Do some jumping jacks between meetings, strike a yoga pose, do some qi gong to “open the flow of energy,” whatever strikes your fancy and shifts you to either a more activated or more tranquil state.

As for those pajama bottoms? Personally I love the quirkiness and the comfort factor — as well as the option to dress up ad hoc. Try different outfits and office set ups, and see what what supports the WFH experience you want.

Learn more about coaching with me at caseyonder.com.

Psychologist, success coach, believer in solid behavioral science and the power of tuning in.

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