Updated: Mar 16
It's now officially a pandemic outbreak, this coronavirus is taking hold over everyone and everything. In a world where everyone is so used to travelling, meeting up and socializing, it's weird to now learn that you should restrict your movements as much as possible. People keep more distance between each other, events are being cancelled left, right and centre and museums are closed.
No more up close and personal
But on if we look at the situation on a smaller scale, on a personal level, it is now advised that working from home is the best thing to do. This makes a few things easier - for one, there's no commute. So you're more efficient with your time. You appreciate your home more, perhaps. By spending more time in it during the day, you experience it further. But are there any more upsides - oh yes, did I mention working without any make-up on with unwashed hair in your pj's? But actually, this is can also be a downside. Getting dressed in the morning, actually also puts you in a certain state of mind. Of course, there's no need to wear a suit if you're stuck in your home (office) all day, but wearing clean clothes and taking a bit of effort, will make you feel better about yourself and can also help you focus. Since I've been a freelancer I've gotten up every morning, I did my normal routine as if I was going into the office. It's setting yourself up for work which also leads to setting yourself up for success. You're not going to conquer the world in your flannel pyjamas.
Fistbumps, footkisses, elbow nudges
Working from home also saves you from the awkwardness of greeting people. Whereas before you had the option to shake hands, give hugs or go for two or three kisses, now it's all about limiting contact. But people still feel a need to greet and thus the elbow nudge and footkisses were born. Luckily, when working at home there's none of that. What is also going to benefit from this, is the magic word: efficiency. One of the things I disliked most about working in a team is all the meetings. I mean, I love(d) working in teams, but sometimes not everyone is a stakeholder and should be in the meeting. Sometimes a simple update with only 3 bullet points is enough. One of my favourite IG accounts @Dudewithsign, shared this spot-on picture. Now even the die-hard meeting people are forced to be concise and concrete. So working from home, is in that sense, a blessing in disguise. Of course, those meetings will now be held over Skype and phone, but people will question the necessity of these more and will also have less of a chit-chat. More tips (in Dutch) on this funny Vice article that also gives you some straight-up advice on how to be good in working from home without looking like a slob. I've also written more on how to make the most of your home office, go read here.
Reset, start over Of course, more time for reflection will also happen. Being more inward, thinking before doing, not being overly-cautious of course, but not taking things for granted anymore. We can take positive things from this. Like Lidewij Edelkoort says in this very inspiring article on Dezeen that this coronavirus "will eventually allow humanity to reset its values". We can only embrace that.