Most of us already have experience working from home (WFH) thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic. Some people love it. (No commute, great! Working in pajamas, yes!) But some of us aren’t entirely convinced.
For women, working from home presents a set of challenges and opportunities, particularly for those who are mothers (applause to each one of you!)
So here’s another “tips for working from home” article, but written by a woman for all women. Because I see you and your unique struggles.
Why WFH Can Be a Challenge?
It can affect your mental health
Several recent studies point to the significant impact mandatory remote work practices have on mental health, especially for women. Isolation, lack of support, and ambiguity when working remotely can lead to sadness, demotivation, lack of focus, and in extreme cases, even depression or anxiety.
It can make you feel guilty
Many people feel guilty when they’re not physically at work. You might have thoughts like, “I’m not working enough” or, “I should be doing more.”
It can disrupt your routine
Working from home can disrupt women’s daily routines in various ways: you might end up working more hours, feel like you have to juggle family demands, and struggle to “disconnect” from work.
Professional Development Opportunities for Women WFH
Invest more time in yourself
Working from home often eliminates one or two full hours of commuting time. The danger for working moms is the tendency to invest this time in household activities rather than professional development. Studies have found that women are more likely to take on more household responsibilities while working flexibly, whereas men are more likely to prioritize and expand their spheres of work.
While family and domestic matters are important, the extra time in your day can be redirected towards things like online networking, reading news and articles, or enhancing your skills by completing an online course.
Discover new online communities
A pet peeve for many people when working remotely is the loss of community and socialization in the workplace. Working from home can be an opportunity to broaden your horizons and join other online communities to fill this social void. There are many digital spaces dedicated to celebrating professional women.
You can connect with like-minded professionals, exchange stories and advice, and possibly even find a mentor!
Practical Tips for Working from Home
Struggling to stay focused or motivated? Try out some of these techniques.
Manage your work time
The Pomodoro technique can be a great alternative. It’s a time management method that divides your work and rest to produce a better quality result and allows you to recharge in between.
Organize your time more effectively
Have you ever felt that you don’t wake up properly before 10 A.M.? Or that you work well in the morning but experience a slump after lunch?
The 9-to-5 office environment has forced us to work during set hours. However, working from home may allow you to start your tasks when you feel your best. This could mean doing your best work at 5 A.M. or taking a power nap to recharge, things you wouldn’t normally be able to do in the office! By working when you’re at your best, you’re more likely to produce better results and come up with more creative proposals, accelerating your professional development.
Whether you work from home by choice or not, know that it doesn’t have to hinder your career. In fact, it might even provide opportunities to excel and achieve new goals.