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Five to Thrive 4/3/2020

Your Tips for Workplace Success

By Thriving Workplace Initiative Staff

Illustration of coffee mugs with a blue background

Illustration by Creative Strategies

Illustration by Creative Strategies

UMD’s Thriving Workplace Initiative is making the University of Maryland a great place to work by providing tools and support to foster engaged, inclusive and empowered faculty and staff across campus.

Five to Thrive offers five strategies each month crowdsourced from research, experts and our own UMD community to help your workplace thrive.

Several weeks ago, UMD’s workspaces went through the kind of radical transformation that would put “Extreme Makeover” to shame. As we navigate this new (and temporary!) normal, here are some work-from-home tips for keeping connected, productive and sane:

  • Repurpose your commute time. You’ve got some found time on your hands now—how are you going to use it? Consider a morning coffee with a partner or friend (virtually), or taking a walk. If you’re juggling a new career in home-schooling, use the time before little ones start their routine to answer emails and set out what you want to accomplish for the day.
  • Create boundaries. As tempting as it may be to work in pajamas every day, showering and getting dressed signals to your brain that it’s time to start the day. Keep the TV off. Maintain a healthy relationship with your pantry by planning some snacks.
  • Synchronize routines with your new “co-workers.” For instance, if you need quiet time for certain blocks during the day or have a standing Zoom meeting, establish some ground rules with other people in your home to ensure that they have self-guided, quiet activities.
  • Designate an office space. Like COVID-19, work is spreadable and can easily take over every room in your house. Set up one place where work happens. Outfit it with the tools that help you work best, whether it’s a pleasant view, good tunes or strong Wi-Fi.
  • Have a quitting time. It’s incredibly easy for work and home life to become indistinguishable. Find a way to signal to yourself that the workday is over and it’s time to shut the laptop, whether it’s a standing date with your kids at 5:30 to ride bikes, making dinner or catching up with the evening news.

Take advantage of the just-launched Thrive Through This program offering a variety of tools including: short coaching calls, informative webinarsvirtual working sessions and a drop box for shared materials. Together, we can Thrive Through This.

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