One of the benefits of working from home is no one cares what you look like or where you work. You could be in your home office, in your bed, on the beach, by a pool, or in an Airbnb apartment. You could be in your pajamas, in your bathing suit, in your birthday suit, yoga clothes, or sweaty gym clothes after you just worked out (yes, that’s been me before).
But should you care?
Yes, you should. I believe that when you go to “work”, even if you work at home, there should be some kind of mental transition to help you get ready for the day.
When I worked in the corporate world, assisting a CEO, I would spend 20-30 minutes on my makeup and hair, before putting on a professional outfit. Hearing that, you might be surprised to know that our company had a casual clothing policy. Most of my colleagues wore jeans and some even wore sneakers and hoodie sweatshirts.
I dressed as professional as possible because I wanted to make sure that I always looked good as I was representing the CEO. In a way, I considered myself an ambassador for his office. Plus, if he invited any guests and failed to tell me, I knew I would always look good.
Working this way taught me the value of helping to get your brain into the appropriate mindset to work my best.
I don’t work in my bed. I don’t wear sweats (most of the time). I don’t stay in my pajamas all day. I found that in order to give my best, I still have to transition from personal to professional, even if that only means walking 5 steps into another room and putting on nicer pants.
My typical outfit includes jeans and a t-shirt, sometimes I have a sweatshirt on if it’s cold. Occasionally I put on makeup. But as long as something is done to signal the start of new work day, my brain knows it’s time to hit the ground running.
If I leave the house, I make sure that I’m wearing a put together outfit (again, it can be jeans, but never sweats and the shirt must be nice) in case I strike up a conversation with someone who asks what I do. Just like I was an ambassador for my CEO when I was in the corporate world, now I am an ambassador for my business.
How do you make that transition to getting ready to work when you work at home? Do you think it’s important to make that “mental transition”?
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