Working remotely certainly has its perks, but so does working in an office around your colleagues. Whether you’ve only been working from home for the last year due to COVID-19 or if you’ve been working remotely and just landed your first office job in a while, there are several tips that can help you adjust to life back in the office. Even if you’re looking forward to returning to the physical workplace, it won’t be without the challenges that any major transition can bring. From adjusting your routine beforehand to checking in on your mental health regularly, here are five tips that can help set you up for success when it comes to your return to the workplace after working from home.
Start Adjusting Your Routine at Home Beforehand
Set yourself up for success and start adjusting to your new (or your new old) routine a week before you head into the office. Go through your morning routine as if you’re leaving for work that day. This will help you figure out what time to get up, when to have breakfast and give you an idea of exactly how much time you need in the morning to get ready. Plus, it will help you adjust to a new sleep schedule if you have to get up significantly earlier. If your company has a flexible work-from-home policy, consider easing into this transition by going in 2-4 times a week at first.
Rethink Things like Travel, Meetings and Conferences
Even as people start to return to the office, it's important to remember that we're still going to be living in a hybrid world. Rethink things like travel, meetings and conferences. Some people may not feel comfortable travelling yet so it's important to consider virtual options for anyone who may want to join your event but can't physically be there.
Check In On and Support Your Team
If you're feeling slightly (or very) overwhelmed by your return to the office, it's important to remember that your team might be feeling similarly. Be sure to schedule time to check in on them and see how you're best able to support them during this transition whether it's with a hybrid work-from-home schedule (when possible) or flexible working hours.
Take Breaks throughout the Day
And I’m not just talking about your lunch break – which you should absolutely be taking as well. Now that you're back in the office, it might be tempting to skip the breaks you were taking at home but breaks are important for productivity and your health. Scatter 5-10 minute breaks throughout your day. Don’t forget to stretch your legs and to stay hydrated. A quick 5 minute walk around the block can make you feel refreshed and more productive.
Make Your Mental Health a Priority
And most importantly, don’t forget to make your mental health a priority. It’s normal to feel overwhelmed by a new schedule but it will get easier as you adjust. Be sure to monitor your anxiety and manage the expectations of others around you. Take time for breaks and be transparent about what you need during this transition time so that your team can support you.
By following the tips above, you can help prepare yourself for a successful transition back into the workplace!