Haven’t Worked From Home Before? This Viral Twitter Thread Would Help You Get Started

As coronavirus spreads throughout the world and has now over 4000 confirmed cases in the United States alone (at the time this article was written), a lot of firms are urging the employees to try and work from their homes to arrest the spread of this deadly virus. While it may be a normal thing for some people to work from home, there is a sizeable population that isn’t exactly ready to make this transition. To figure out how to work from home, you can take help from this viral Twitter thread that offers tips on how this transition can be a seamless one.


So what are the tips?

So, on Sunday, famous planetary scientist Emily Lakdawalla urged experienced remote workers to share their experiences and useful tips on how to work effectively from home while avoiding all possible distractions. And people delivered.


Friends, there are going to be a lot of people newly working from home starting this week, and it will be a difficult transition for some. *IF AND ONLY IF you are experienced at working from home*, please reply with tips for working effectively & avoiding distractions!

— Emily Lakdawalla (@elakdawalla) March 8, 2020



Block the noise

Astroparticle physicist and Cosmologist Sophia Gad-Nasr suggested that to work effectively she often leaves her phone in one of the other rooms and lets it be in the silent mode for hours. Also, filling the room with plenty of light and not working from the bed, apart from pretending that TV doesn’t exist, were some of the other useful suggestions she shared.

She also urged people to use their earplugs or headphones to focus better while working.


I work from home most of the time anyway. My advice:

  • stay away from the TV
  • if your bed triggers nap mode, work in the living room. If not possible, fill room with LIGHT (natural, or desk lamp)
  • keep your phone on another desk and put on silent for the hours you plan to work

— Sophia Gad-Nasr (@Astropartigirl) March 8, 2020



Stick to your work hours

On the other hand, geophysicist and science communicator Mika McKinnon suggested that people should set their work hours and always stick to them, else it would just end up taking away all their time while they procrastinate with chores and errands. Very useful suggestion, in my opinion!


Set & stick to work hours. You can split hours morning/night with afternoon “off” or timeshift, but still have set hours or you’ll constantly get derailed.

It’s easy to get distracted by flexibility to take a social call, duck out for an errand, or procrastinate with chores.

— Mika McKinnon (@mikamckinnon) March 8, 2020



Refocus and restart your brain

McKinnon also suggested that if one is unable to focus on work at hand, he or she should go for a short activity that helps in refocusing such as showering, or taking a small walk outside, or even a small dance party!


Pick a healthy reset & refocus task to get back on track.

It can be a stretch break, walking around the block, sweeping the floors, having a mini dance party, showering, whatever as long as it’s short & defined. Otherwise you’ll idle by snacking & browsing social media.

— Mika McKinnon (@mikamckinnon) March 8, 2020



1 o’clock pants rule

Software designer and filmmaker Aharon Rabinowitz seems to be a big supporter of the “1 o’clock pants rule”, according to which no matter what, you shouldn’t be wearing your pajamas by early afternoon. According to him, it helps in getting that vibe of working in an office and helps get work done quickly.


1 o’clock pants rule – you have to be wearing pants by midday and it can’t be sweatpants or any other kind of drawstring pants.

I’m not even joking. You don’t have to dress formally, but get out of your pajamas. It makes a huge difference in your mental state.

— Aharon Rabinowitz (@ABAOProductions) March 8, 2020


And then, some people even went ahead and suggested that we all should have a second pair of pajamas – one for sleep and another one for work! Seriously!


This is huge for me, even if I’m just changing from night pajamas to “day pajamas” (leggings, comfy top) – it’s still a shift into a different mode.

— Karen Plaisted (@full_escape) March 9, 2020


Of course, not having children helps. Refrain from having children.

— Thomas Dixon (@ProfThomasDixon) March 8, 2020


And cats are the enemy. Make a cat-proof barrier around your keyboard.

— Radha Venkat (@AhdarTaknev) March 8, 2020


Seriously, no matter what precaution you take, your cat is going to sit and walk on that keyboard anyway.


I read one guy’s suggestion that you put out a broken keyboard so the cat can have it’s own. Turns out it doesn’t work if you have two cats. pic.twitter.com/lvqgRetNkX

— Gail Edington (@GailEdington) March 8, 2020



Yes, you ARE working

Another useful tip: it is extremely important for the person you’re sharing your house with to accept and realize that you are WORKING from home.


It is crucial that both you AND ESPECIALLY your spouse/partner understand that though you are working from home, you are “at work” and can not be expected to do household chores, pick up after kids, etc. (spent 9 years working from home; it took a year for spouse to grok this)

— Dr. Heidi B. Hammel (@hbhammel) March 8, 2020


And, finally, while it is important to start working at the right time, it is also important to clock out. Just doing small things like going for a small walk around the block or doing yoga can help your mind realize that the work hours are over.



Know when to get out of your “work” mode

We noticed how a lot of suggestions focused on how to get into the work mode, but very few suggested on how to get out of it.


Make sure you have a routine that marks the end of the working day to replace your commute. You need and deserve to ‘switch off’ again.

— Lanterne Rogue (@Canocola) March 8, 2020


We understand that it may take a while to make this switch, but once you really do, you’ll probably never ever want to work from an office again. We hope you found the article useful. Don’t forget to check out our other articles down below. Also, please stay at your home and stay safe!