A common complaint of people in relationships is that their own work-life and that of their partner tends to get in the way of spending quality time with each other. With the pandemic meaning that many of us are now spending an unprecedented amount of time with our partners as we are forced to work from home, this dynamic has been turned on its head. A new problem has emerged: how do we manage to get the work we need to do done when faced with the constant distraction of having to share a workspace with a garrulous girlfriend or big-mouthed boyfriend?
If you’re struggling to reconcile work with home life during the lockdown, here are a few tips to help improve your productivity that you can put into action as a couple.
1. Take Breaks at the Same Time
It’s a well-known fact that taking a timeout from work at intervals throughout the day is essential to keeping your productivity up. Try to coordinate when you take your breaks so as not to distract each other when you are in full flow.
2. Set Joint Incentives
When you’ve got your nose hard to the grindstone, it’s often the thought of the treat that you are going to give yourself when you finish that keeps you motivated. Setting a joint incentive with your partner can be fun and help to foster a sense of team spirit as you both push each other on to the finish line.
3. Work as a Team
Unless you both work for the same company, it’s likely that the rises and falls in the intensity of your workloads will differ from each other. When you have a day when you don’t have to do too much, aim to support your partner by cooking and doing the housework. When you’re inundated, your partner will reciprocate to keep household matters under control.
4. Do Exercise Together
Starting the day by doing exercise is a tried and tested means preparing yourself for a productive day of work. This is especially true at the moment as cabin fever sets in during the lockdown. Find an activity that you both enjoy doing and spend half an hour to an hour working out together to help get into the right mindset for a productive day of work.
5. Put Down Boundaries
Working remotely can be tricky due to an inevitable clash between yours and your partner’s ideas of when work should end and fun should begin. To make sure that you’re both not stepping on each other’s toes, set some clear boundaries that you both agree on. These might include things like keeping silent between certain times, turning off annoying mobile alerts or even working in different rooms.
Despite the worries that we all have about the future and the health of our loved ones, let’s face it, getting to spend more time with our partners isn’t the worst thing in the world! And if you work together and use each other’s strengths, you can both form a formidable team in which to maximize your productivity at the same time as working to beat the lockdown blues.
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