Home office tips needed

photoWelcome to my new office! That’s right I’m working from home and I need your best practices. I have already figured out that it is important to get outside during the day (no different from an office in a building). Fortunately, my office is in a room that I don’t tend to spend time in outside of the workday. How do you fit in exercise? What do you do for lunch? Fortunately I can also take my personal laptop and work from local coffee shops sometimes, too.

I built this standing desk to sit on top of an old kitchen tablet that was serving as a makeshift desk. The total for the parts was less than $25. So far it is working great. You can make your own by following these instructions. I quickly realized that I needed a gel mat to stand on, the wood floor is quite hard. That should arrive today.

(Yes I know CF4E has a beautiful iMac and there are cords running from the keyboard and mouse. If you would like to make a contribution or purchase a bluetooth keyboard and trackpad, this organization would be delighted to receive your contribution).

Is there anything that I’m missing? What are some of the things you do to make sure you have as productive a workday as possible?

About rabbisteinman

I am a rabbi living in North America. I was ordained from HUC-JIR. This is my blog.
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4 Responses to Home office tips needed

  1. Rabbi Laura says:

    Having worked from home for much of the last 12 years, here are my tips:
    – always get up and get dressed. NEVER work in your PJs. By 2 PM you’ll just feel gross.
    – walk away from the office at the end of the day and don’t go back in unless you absolutely need to. Just because your office is at home, doesn’t mean you need to work 24/7.
    – I like the flexibility of my days. Sometimes I exercise in the morning, sometimes afternoon. Each day can be different since you don’t have to punch a time clock. Allow yourself that flexibility.
    – Do not, I repeat, do not, walk into the kitchen to grab snacks all day long. That would be very dangerous. For me, that is a hard commitment to keep, but I try.
    – Make use of the mute button on your phone. If you find yourself on a conference call while doing dishes or folding laundry, use your mute button so the persons on the other end of the line don’t hear the distractions of water etc.
    – Make lunch dates.
    – Change your space every once in a while. Sometimes when I just can’t get something done at home I take my laptop to a Starbucks etc. I am always amazed at how productive I can be in and around the white noise of a coffee shop.
    – Enjoy the flexibility of your days!!!

    • Thanks, Laura! Really helpful!

      • Rabbi Laura says:

        One more I thought of – I wear a pedometer every day. Staying at home often means we don’t take very many steps each day. It is scary to know how little I walk some days. Wearing a pedometer keeps me aware of this and forces me to find ways to get moving. My minimum goal each day is 10,000 steps.

  2. Lori Salzman says:

    My challenge is actually getting in a full day’s work without getting distracted by non-work projects around the house — or that TV show I’ve been wanting to watch. I have found it very helpful to make appointments on my calendar, even if the appointment is only with me, myself, and I. Work, shopping, lunch, exercise, paperwork, cooking, etc. If I block out my day on my calendar, I’m much better at holding myself accountable.

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