Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Day 5: Working from Home (Part 2: Challenges)

This article is part of The 100 Days Offensive.

Working from home has challenges and I think they are different for everyone.

I play the home office game in the "easy" mode. No kids in the house and a separate room to work evade the most common challenges. Also my internet connection and IT setup have no problem to cope with the requirements. So what could possibly challenge me?

My primary challenge is that the hour seems to have become shorter. I do not save much time by avoiding the way to and back from work. Shopping was never a thing for me. So home office holds little in terms of extra time revenue for me. On the other hand additional time drains have appeared. Online meetings take up more time than presence meetings. This is not primarily due to the meeting itself, but I spend a lot more time beforehand preparing and structuring my points. Heading into an online meeting unprepared is a safe way to a disaster. Preparing food takes more time than heading for staff canteen. But the largest drain is the multitude of communication channels (Teams, Email, Texts, etc.) that offer an undisciplined person like me a lot of options to get sidetracked. And take to those opportunities like a duck to water. I still have to find a new equilibrium.

Another long term challenge is the excellent stock of food I have at home. Stress and readily available food make a deadly combination for me. This will really will haunt me. The current counter strategy is to spend as much time with indoor sports as possible. But that can only compensate a limited amount. Again my lack of discipline falls back on me.

This problem is compounded by sitting too much. In the company I easily walk 7.000 steps on a day in office just visiting and talking to colleagues. The number has tanked like the economy during corona and on some days I do not reach 3.000. Add video games as my favorite stress relief and <WHAM> you have the perfect storm.

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