If you've taken more Zoom calls than walks outside, can't stop snacking, and work at unusual hours throughout the day then you're officially working from home. To help ease you into this new OUAI of social distancing life (or, if you're used to the WFH life and just need to spice things up), we rounded up the best WFH tips our team has to offer on setting up dedicated work stations, planning day-to-day schedules, preventing cabin fever, and more.
Diana, Director of Sales and Education
To be completely honest, prior to COVID-19 I didn’t give too much thought to my WFH area. Now trying to create a little nook that is inspiring yet functional was a necessity. I wanted my space to be colorful, organized, and calming. My husband and I live in a small space in an effort to save for our forever home. Every inch matters and clutter can build up easily. At the end of each day we make sure we do a ten minute clean up (cue in Barney’s The Clean Up Song remixed by Travis Scott). The idea of not being able to jump on a plane to see my family back in New York is tough. I like to keep a few small pictures of my nieces and nephews close by. I have my wedding picture in a frame because (get ready to emotionally vomit) my husband does inspire me to work hard and he is ridiculously handsome. A recent purchase from Target has changed my life. It’s small wipe board with the days of the week listed horizontally. I write key work projects, workouts, and household chores. I update it every Sunday. Erasing a day when it’s done is as satisfying as pimple popping videos.
I am the queen of distraction. My mind races with a million things a minute. When I am feeling extra distracted from work, I walk away from my desk and take ten deep breathes. If you know me then you know I am not a yogi, centered person (hello, high strung Staten Islander in da house), however this works.
My challenges are I am working at all different times of the day. I was freaked out about this in the beginning but now I am trying to not be so hard on myself. I whisper the words of a very wise boss ass bitch, “You’re doing amazing, sweetie” and take one day at a time.
Leandra, Brand Marketing Manager
I always have music playing in my apartment. I’m listening to the new Weeknd album on repeat right now.
A few of my necessary desk essentials are OUAI Body Crème, which I’ve been using to moisturize my hands from the continuous washing; a gratitude journal since it’s so easy to panic right now so keeping a gratitude journal near provides a little comfort; and a healthy snack because I’m tempted 100x a day to eat candy
My best WFH tip is to start your morning slow, meditate, take your vitamins, sip tea, and read anything but the news. Oh and of course, a strict to-do list and time cube!
Sara, Digital Marketing Coordinator
I converted my vanity into my WFH desk to give me a proper space to dedicate to work. I get easily distracted so I created my own personal space to focus. My desk essentials include hand cream (especially now), a nice refreshing facial mist, lip balm, a candle, and my air pods.
My best WFH tip is to create a dedicated space that is quiet and well-lit to help you focus. It’s easy to become distracted when working at home, especially with a baby and husband at home now. Also, don’t forget to take breaks as it's easy to become hyper-focused. Don’t forget to drink water and eat lunch and just breathe.
Leah, Social Media Coordinator
Since I live alone in a small studio apartment, I’m spending time between my parent’s house and mine. I’m fortunate enough that they don’t live too far away, and I realized it was important that I still had some human interaction during this time (even as introverted as I am). Right now I’m coming to you live from our dining room table. I’m drinking lots of water, washing my hands often and listening to music ALL day – it’s really the only thing keeping me sane.
My best WFH tip is to create a routine for yourself. I’m starting each day with some form of exercise – even if it’s 20 minutes outdoors or a guided virtual class (all the rage right now). I still wake up and do my normal routine, start working at 9am and take a lunch break. I also recommend taking this time to be creative! Learn a new skill, read a new book or just create a new Pinterest board.
Lindsay, Director of Global Communications
I’m actually an avid work-from-homer. I love it, I want it, and I often need it. It’s a welcome break from the distractions I feel when I’m at the office sometimes. Currently my set-up is in my kitchen nook I’ve taken over the dining table and I have my computer with a notebook, my favorite white post-its, a white acrylic tray for any paper I need readily available, and a little jar of flowers to keep things bright.
I have windows next to me and in front of me that I keep open, so lots of natural light and fresh air pours in throughout the day – which is key for me! My husband is taking over our office with the big computer, because not as much light gets in, so I’ll gladly take the light over the size of the space :) My puggle often side-eyes me at different moments of the day when he wants attention or when he wants a walk. Sometimes I’ll get him to sit on my lap for a total of 60 seconds while I work, and it’s bliss.
My best WFH tip is to treat the day as though you were going to a real office – get dressed, do your morning routine, like maybe even put on jewelry to feel normal. Then sit down, think about what you want to accomplish that day and write out your schedule. I jot down almost an hour-to-hour schedule, including when to take breaks and what to do during those breaks (prep din, take a walk, workout, a load of laundry, run a quick errand). I also really force myself to stop at a certain hour, whether that’s 5 or 6 or whatever you feel comfortable with. I think it’s important to create that boundary and shut your shit off when you’re really done!
Nina, Blog Content Manager
I’ve worked from home for the last five years so social distancing is just another day in the life for me. But now that I don’t have the option of going to a coffee shop (which I regularly did pre-coronavirus to keep the creative juices flowing), I decided I needed to perk up my work spaces (AKA everywhere in my apartment). So I brought the outdoors in—I got a new orchid plant and fern for the living room and hung up English ivy in the kitchen. The pops of green make me happy when I'm feeling stir-crazy.
Things on my desk right now—always water and sometimes matcha latte; OUAI Super Dry Shampoo (applied right before Zoom calls), and Hurraw Green Tea Lip Balm.
My best WFH tip is to leave your house in the beginning, during (lunch) or end of each day for at least a half hour. Otherwise you’ll go insane! Also, I know now could be a little tricky, but investing in two desks is helpful if working from home becomes your new norm. I have a standard West Elm desk I got from Offer Up and a standing desk from IKEA (shown above). Working while standing or taking calls helps break up the day. And one more tip: shower in the morning. I often get so busy working that I don't shower until 2pm—and that can really mess with your head. In other words, maintain a healthy, normal WFH schedule unlike me.