Alternative tips to live your best life while working from home during a pandemic
You might have found yourself working from home for the first time ever with no idea of when, or even if, life will return to normal. But the honeymoon is over. Your flatmate(s), family, pet(s) – basically everyone and everything around you – are starting to get on your nerves and you still have a deadline to meet. You feel anxious because everywhere you turn you see mounting coronavirus numbers and hot takes about what to do. Thankfully, here at JAXenter, we’ve come up with some pro tips to help you live your best life in the face of all these challenges.
This is not normal! 2020 has treated us to wildfires, plagues of locusts, earthquakes and more. And now thanks to the coronavirus we’re all stuck at home wondering which country will be the next to enter lockdown. And we get to watch all of it while working from home. We think Duncan Davidson said it best on Twitter:
For all of you working at home for the first time, it’s usually not like this. This isn’t working from home (WFH). This is working during pandemic. (WDP). Totally different experience. Be kind to yourselves.
— Duncan Davidson (@duncan) March 23, 2020
Since this scenario is not simply working from home, but “WDP”, which is totally different, we’ve put together some tips to help you get through this. It’s a way for us to blow off steam as well, so we hope you enjoy yourself!
Alternative tips for working from home
Declare yourself Queen / King
One of the more convenient parts of being royalty is that you can lock wrongdoers in the dungeon. This is a useful way to get those you live with out of the way while you grapple with what it means to be in lockdown. The best part is, if anyone asks where your prisoners have gone, you can just tell everyone they’re self-isolating.
Build a monitor fort
As the ruler, you need an appropriate seat of power. We think pillow forts, while comfortable, are an inferior choice. A true monarch builds a castle using monitors; their blue glow will make you feel safe and will help you to deal with (escaping) your new reality. If you’re really insistent on a pillow fort, integrating a VR headset into your rig will enable the perfect balance of comfort and security.
Sort out your necessities
You’re not in the office any more so you can expand your coffee horizons. It doesn’t just have to be gross, brown fuel—seize the moment and learn how to brew a cup of coffee like a master! Or perhaps you’re the type who needs crappy coffee to get that real “work” feeling – in which case there are plenty of options available to you of the “instant” variety. Just remember, if working during pandemic (WDP) ever ends, it will be HARD to go back to the way things were.
Learn to mute your damn mic
You might be the ruler of your domain, but royalty is expected to show some decorum on state visits. You’re going to be putting in long hours at home, and it’s only a matter of time before you’re in a Zoom meeting with a bag of chips in front of you. Push to talk is not the future, it’s the HERE AND NOW. Chomp those cheetos and crunch those chips, but only with the mic muted or you might end up on someone’s hit list. You don’t want to be THAT person in your daily meeting…!
Mute everything else as well
Slack notifications, emails, phone calls. How does anyone get any work done when they’re working from home? Our recommendation? Mute all of it. You don’t need to participate in your Slack group’s gif battle, you can check your email first thing and after lunch, and who calls these days? Get into the flow state by cocooning yourself in your monitor fort and ignoring everything else.
Sure, you can get comfortable when wearing your usual work clothes, but a hoodie and sweats, or t-shirt and pajama bottoms let you BE comfortable all the time. Worried about what coworkers will see on the webcam? Just stick something over it and tell them it’s broken or make sure it’s aggressively framing your face and nothing else. You will be so comfortable, nothing else will matter.
Get a coworker who understands
You’re human, so you might eventually start to feel lonely. We think Tom Hanks had the right idea – get yourself a volleyball and draw a face on it. Congratulations, you now have the perfect coworker. They don’t make annoying jokes, force you to talk when you haven’t had your morning coffee, or make any sound whatsoever! They even have the advantage that you can kick them with all your might and HR will never believe them. Just be careful when returning to the office after the pandemic is over – human coworkers will surely have an opinion about such treatment.
Live in a bubble
You’ve declared yourself ruler of all you survey, locked all your minions in the dungeon and nested yourself in a fortress of monitors. You’re comfortable, you’ve got supplies and you’ve reduced distractions to a minimum. This setup is actually a great way to spend not only your workday, but your whole life. Reality is a drag right now, so you’ll find it equally awesome to stream your favorite show, watch uplifting videos about cats, penguins and baking, or get started on one of those games you’ve been stockpiling. Our recommendation is Animal Crossing: New Horizons. Move to a deserted island paradise and live a relaxing life catching bugs and fish to repay a crushing debt imposed upon you by a raccoon with “connections”.
Seriously though, keep your chin up and we’ll get through this together. Any more alternative suggestions are welcome in the comments, and we will continue to provide great content for you throughout this crisis.
–JAXenter Editorial Team