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    Mar 31, 2020

    15 Tips To Make Working From Home A Little Better

    From keeping a cardigan close by to taking a TikTok dance break, these tips may help you get through the workday.

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    Although being able to work from home during this coronavirus outbreak is definitely a privilege, we know that it can be a bit of a ~struggle~ for those who aren't used to it. So, we recently asked members of the BuzzFeed Community to tell us the little things that help them conquer their workday.

    HBO

    Here are some of their helpful tips and tricks:

    1. Don't stay in bed.

    20th Century Fox Television

    "Absolutely, no matter what, DO NOT LAY IN BED! Even if you’re convinced you’ll be able to sit up and focus on your work, there inevitably comes a point where you will find yourself sinking down and feeling like a nap is a good idea." —jennacappuccia

    2. Give yourself your own ~space~ while you work — especially if you're working from home with a spouse or roommates.

    We TV

    "My husband and I have BOTH worked from home for the last year, so we’re oddly well-suited to this lifestyle. I can not stress enough how important it is to give yourself your own 'space' in the house. I take the upstairs, he takes the downstairs, and we each have a desk that’s set up just for work." —yolklore

    3. Get dressed and ready for the day, like you would if you were actually leaving the house.

    Nickelodeon

    "Once I wake up, I like to change out of my pajamas, do my makeup and my hair, just like I would going out. Makes me feel like when I’m actually outside and not stuck at inside. This is really big for me, it really changed how I approach being stuck at home." —andreal4cdf2228b

    "I've worked from home for four years now and the biggest thing for me is get up and get washed/showered and dressed for the day as if you were leaving the house. It keeps you in that work mind frame and stops you from feeling comfortable enough to lie on the sofa! Also, ending up in pjs for days on end sends you off the edge, trust me!" —carly1906

    "Even when I’m not on a videocall, I always shower and get dressed before doing anything involved with my job. It gets me in a different mindset and helps me shift into 'work mode.'" —itsbees

    4. Give your loved ones a call throughout the day.

    MTV

    "Making sure to call your friends and your loved ones throughout the time you are stuck at home, makes work seem so much lighter and easier to handle." —andreal4cdf2228b

    5. Try the Pomodoro technique, which is a time management method where you use a timer to break down work into intervals. Typically you work in 25 minute intervals, separated by shorter breaks (about five minutes).

    20th Century Fox Television

    "USE THE POMODORO TECHNIQUE!!! I create a routine where each large break (25 minutes) is dedicated to something away from my desk — lunch, short workout, walking the dogs. The five minute breaks I use for quick work-related phone calls or a short household chore like starting the washing machine or dishwasher. I start and end the day with 30 minutes of email catch up, planning and reflecting, and use three cycles of Pomodoro in between. The important thing to remember is that when you end your workday, end it! Shut down the computer, turn the email notifications off on your phone, etc." —emilyds2

    "I use the Pomodoro technique to remember to take breaks. I walk, exercise and eat during those breaks." —dianas47fc19775

    If you want a timer to help with this method, try this one from Staples for $20.

    6. Take an actual lunch break — which means sign off and get some food.

    MTV

    "I work from home full-time. Honestly the best advice for me is not skipping your lunch time and not eating while working. Make yourself stop and take that time to eat and tune out work." —katd497fa0216

    7. Get some fresh air (while still practicing social distancing, of course).

    Warner Bros.

    "Getting fresh air throughout the day. I will walk outside every time I need to let the dog out and just stand there a couple of minutes facing the sun (weather permitting) and breathing the fresh air. And work next to or in front of a window so you can look outside and make sure you get natural light in the room you work out of." —katd497fa0216

    8. Keep a cardigan handy.

    New Line Cinema

    "Keep a cardigan on the back of the chair to cover up your ancient T-shirt for unexpected video conferences." —a4bf93d1e5

    If you need a new cardigan, check out the one pictured above from Nordstrom for $23.40 (originally $39; available in sizes XXS–XL and two colors). Or this one from Asos for $49.50 (available in sizes 0–14). Or this one from Universal Standard for $115 (available in sizes 4XS–4XL and two colors).

    9. Keep your routine as normal as possible, whether that means starting your day with coffee or taking your break at a certain time.

    Legendary Entertainment

    "Keep a routine. It's easy to just wake up later and sort of just get to things when you get to them, but have a time you commit to starting your work. Make cues for yourself that you're starting your day like get your coffee, have your snacks, do what you might do at your workplace to get in the swing of things." —l4a6879caf

    10. When the workday is over, log off!

    Netflix

    "When you’re off the clock, put everything away and turn your work brain off." —kathbowk89

    11. Get comfy in your work space by lighting a candle, having your favorite snack nearby, opening up the window, etc.

    Music Choice

    "I make myself really really comfortable; I have my drinks and snacks ready, I light a candle and make sure to face daylight, I move around throughout my work day so I don't feel stuck in the same place." —lnnrth

    BTW, here are some great candle suggestions! 🕯️

    12. If you like the TV on, turn on something that won't cause too much distraction — like something you've already seen a bunch of times or something without an intense plot to follow.

    Nickelodeon

    "If you're going to watch TV, put something on that you don't have to pay a bunch of attention to so you can stay more focused on your work, rather than focused on the TV show." —lumosnox2014

    Check out our list of suggested "background noise" shows!

    13. Sync your break with your roommate(s) and do something together to take your mind off work... like learning a TikTok dance!

    NBC

    "My roommate and I both work for the same company, and are able to sync our breaks. We’ve found entertainment in participating in TikTok challenges, or creating our own!" —daniwolland

    14. Take a few minutes to stretch throughout the day.

    Alice Mongkongllite / BuzzFeed

    "Stretch breaks. 5-10 min, once per hour. Set a timer if it helps." —leanao2

    Check out these 10 simple stretches!

    15. And work without plugging your computer in, so that when it dies you know it's time to take a break.

    CBC

    "I charge my laptop up to 100%. When it gets to 5%, I take a break. I go eat, walk around, take my dog out, or something." —Marquaysa Battle

    Some responses have been edited for length and/or clarity.