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With so many people working from home at the moment, adapting to new technologies and changing your daily routine might seem a bit daunting. To try to help make things a bit easier, we have come up with a list of working-from-home tips that the Search Press team has learnt along the way. 

Our Top Tips

1. Stick to a routine: wake up, exercise and go to bed at the same time that you would normally when you are going to the office. Make sure that you go to lunch and 'leave' at the usual time. Try not to let your work creep into your personal time, or before you know it you'll be working evenings and weekends too!

2. Get dressed or at least change clothes, so you make that distinct 'journey' between home and work, even if the physical journey is just a couple of steps.

3. Set aside a clear space for both 'realms' – work and home – even if you're working out of the same room and at the same desk for both! Consider packing everything work-related into a box at the end of the day. The act of closing the door also helps to reinforce the fact that you are not at home but at work.

4. Remember to drink frequently so you don't dehydrate; just because you are not in the office it doesn't mean that you can't take tea breaks.

5. Divide your working day into blocks and take breaks – it is hard to stay focused for long periods. Have a proper break from work during the day; for example go out for a walk at lunchtime. 

6. Aim to fit in one period of exercise each day to take a break from sitting in front of your computer.

7. Stay in regular contact with colleagues so you don't feel too isolated.

8. You have probably found that you are receiving more emails as people aren't there to talk to you in person. Don't be overwhelmed by them; try to recognize which ones are important, and which are just chatter! 

9. Keep things in perspective: recognizing that everyone's in the same boat goes a long way to helping to anchor you.

10. Focus on being kind and thoughtful for others, instead of turning yourself inwards.

If you have found this useful, here are some more great tips from the Search Press team and our friends!

Lin Chan, Head of Marketing
Have regular video meetings with your department, or colleagues who you work closely with. We have set up a Microsoft Teams chat group, where we regularly talk about work and non-work related stuff, like we do when we’re in the office to stay in touch and not feel so isolated.

May Corfield, Editor
Do some crafting after hours to keep you sane. So much crochet has been done in my house!

May working from home with Archie the cat!

Beth Harwood, Editor
Don't start doing chores at home that you wouldn't be able to do if you weren't physically there, like the laundry. It blurs the divide between 'work you' and 'home you'. Also, it can be noisy and disruptive.

Inger Arthur, Production Manager
The radio has been a great help to me. If you are used to a background noise when you work in the office, you notice the silence when working from home.

Caroline de la Bedoyere, Director
Don't keep the news alerts on while you are at the computer. It causes stress and lack of concentration.

Caroline working from home

Monica Dosanjh, Marketing Assistant
Sometimes listening to songs can become distracting – as you end up singing along to a song and you lose your train of thought. Listening to lo-fi, hip hop and jazz music or nature sounds can help you concentrate and make you feel a lot more relaxed.

Katie French, Editorial Director
I go for a short walk after finishing work at the end of the day. It marks a clear end to the working day and helps you relax in the evening.

Mary Ellingham, Publicity Manager
I've made a point of only listening to the news once in the evening! We should all keep in touch with our normal contacts to make sure that they are OK, as globally we're all in the same boat.

Mary working in the garden

Louise Morley, Production Assistant
I brought my office mug home with me, so that I can still use it for all the tea and coffee during working hours. It sits on my desk at home just like it would in the office, and I don't use it after work or at the weekends – I think subconsciously it helps me separate 'work time' from 'relax time', which is so important for me because my desk set up is in the lounge.

Emma Chonofsky, Publishing Assistant
I find it useful to make sure I write out the date in long form (e.g. Monday the 6th of April, 2020) every single day so I don't lose track of the days of the week.

Lyndsey Dodd, Editor
If I’m concentrating really hard on something then I close my email, Microsoft Teams, Yammer and mute my phone. That helps me get stuck into the work.

Lyndsey working from home

Edward Ralph, Senior Editor
Look for the bright side, where you can. Open the windows and listen to birdsong instead of traffic noise. Time and money spent commuting is now yours. 

Emily Adam, Editor
It sounds like the obvious, but I like creating a nice work space for myself – from making it relatively neat and organized to having nice items around me – as it makes me want to sit at my desk, keeping me motivated! Usually my desk is the place where I dump bank letters or other admin bits to do at the weekend, so setting it up as a proper working spot keeps me much more focused.

Becky Robbins, Senior Editor
For me, I think shutting the office door and playing music softly while I'm working helps to distract me from everything outside: the noisy toddler, the laundry that needs doing, the meals that need cooking etc... it helps me get into the zone!

Becky working from home

Emma Sutcliffe, Design Assistant
Pretending that the stairs is my morning commute to work, and listening to heavy metal while working helps me keep me sane while gigs are cancelled.

Emma working from home

Fiona Pullen, author of Making & Marketing a Successful Art & Craft Business
Try and include some socializing in your day, as working from home can get very lonely. Before lockdown I made sure I had regular lunch dates with friends, days out and trips into the local town to visit the library etc. Now I chat to friends and family members by phone and online pretty much daily, and I do exercise classes via Zoom so I still see and interact with the other people who used to be in the same class as me.  

Fiona working from home

Ailish Henderson, editor Mr X Stitch website
Every evening write a to-do list for the next day. By this I don’t mean ‘save the world’ or ‘learn a language in three days’. The idea surrounding this is to have something to tick off, so at the end of the day we can look back and say, OK, I did this and this… It keeps routine and structure to the day, and helps you remain mentally focused. 

Natalie Richardson, Retail Manager at Mall Galleries
I meditate every day and I've been listening to ambient music with rain sounds, which is so soothing to work to! 

And finally – here are some burning questions that you might have been wanting to ask about working from home, but haven't! Here are art reviewer Henry Malt's honest answers!

Is it OK to attend a video meeting in your pyjamas?

Why is the cat looking so grumpy?
Because, wherever you are, you’re in its place and the dog, having been walked daily by everyone in the house, is now refusing to leave its basket.

Is there a limit to the number of times I can tidy my desk? 
No, but you might want to clean your monitor as well.  

And, of course, the Big One:

What time can I knock off?
Any time as long as you can pick up that video call quickly, and not in your PJs!

We hope that you find our tips useful. Take care of yourself, and carry on crafting!

Stay connected with us on social media by sharing your makes, using the hashtag #SearchPressMakes – we'd love to see them!

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