Find your routine
In a typical office, you are naturally forced into a routine. I need to wake up early, shower, and drive to the office in order to ensure that I am at my desk from “9-5”.
Without a forced schedule a typical day can become much less regimented, and you can find yourself working odd–longer hours to overcompensate.
Getting yourself back into a strict routine is important, not only for your own health and sanity, but also for your teammates. For me I tend to work better in the early morning, so my daily routine typically involves:
- 5:00am - 8:30 - Plan your day.
- 8:30 - Hygeine break! Eat,Shower, Meditate (your choice).
- 9:30 - 11:00 - Focus on work, Ideally most daily meetings will happen here.
- 11:00 - Noon - Lunch Break.
- Noon - 2:00pm - Focus on work.
Note that this is what works for me. You will need find what works for you. Not listed here will you find the emergency things (late night panic e-mails, client phone calls, natural disasters, etc). You can’t schedule what you can’t control! Give each situation the attention it requires, but don’t make yourself crazy.
What about e-mail?
Typically when people tell you about remote work, they usually include a blurb about scheduling e-mail breaks in order to avoid interruption. I find that this isn’t really needed. If I get an e-mail, phone call, text message, slack DM, etc. I take a break–triage the message–and then decide when/how to respond.
Being agile means responding appropriately to change.
I do this because it is important not just to remain busy, but to ensure that you are working on the correct tasks. I will also respond to clients 24 hours a day (as long as I am available) . This doesn’t mean that I need to drop everything to respond to their request, but I will re-adjust my schedule to work with their needs when I can.