I've always been appreciative of WFH. Even before the pandemic, I enjoyed telecommuting because it gets me away from office politics and tensions with people. I really hate (fake) social interactions.
So after close to 2 years (time flies), I'm documenting my quick thoughts about my mundane rhythm so that I can look back fondly if we were to ever be forced to return to office😠.
For context, I love staying home. I'm glad to be able to move into my house and settled the renovations before the mass disruption. Having 3 bedrooms meant my husband and I have our own room for work. We started off working in the same room, but given the number of calls and meetings we need to attend, it was difficult to be together. Nope, we didn't quarrel. Now that I reflect upon it, it seems like my husband is the BEST co-worker I've ever worked with! We are comfortable with each other, and shoot what we think, yet are respectful of each other space. He doesn't judge me regardless of how ugly I look, or what I say. Our banters were mainly just to dig fun of each other otherwise the work hours get mundane. Plus, this "co-worker" volunteers to settle most of my lunch by either cooking or helping to dabao....for free. LOL where else can I find such a wonderful co-worker?
Back to my mundane rhythm.
Prior to WFH, I usually wake up at 7-730am to prepare for work and reach by 830-9am. As I got lazier plus more confident and comfortable with the WFH situation, I could wake up at....830am and get right to work lol
But after months of doing so, I found myself lethargic. I've now set a habit to wake up at 7-730am regardless workday or weekend. I will then lepak in my living room, browsing tikok, FB, telegram and IG till 8.30am. I find myself more productive that way - not sure if that 1+ hour of doing nothing yet getting my mind active helped.
Work then starts from 830am to 1230pm. For a good 1 year plus, I was very hardworking. The start of the WFH situation actually gave me work headaches because of ops issues to iron out. Which was why I would jolt up at 730-8am and go straight to my laptop to work. Nobody forced me to do so, but I felt responsible to quickly sort out the tasks. However, the shit thing was, my former bosses can't see such efforts nor appreciate what we do; all they could do as useless leaders were to question our productivity. They probably thought we were slacking at home. Thankfully we weren't required to appear online on Teams, Zoom or Skype - that would pissed me off with such intrusive micromanagement.
Lunch was very flexible during WFH. It depends on when my food comes. I could eat my lunch at home within 30 mins and then play games or take quick naps until 2pm. It wasn't that rosy though - when I had urgent tasks or feel productive, there were many occasions where I eat lunches in front of my laptop and just kept working. Hence, I didn't take any lunch breaks technically. But I was fine with it. So, I really love the flexibility of lunch hours during WFH. The only thing I miss about pre-covid work lunches was heading out to nice makan places.
Then it's back to work at 2pm till evening.
I was also working late for a period of time. Again, I was fine with it - that was a surprising thing I found out about myself during this period. I actually don't mind pouring more efforts and time to settle work as long as I don't have toxic people to handle, or be in a toxic environment physically where I've to tread people's boundaries. If I had been in office, I would have hated it because of the need to settle dinner late, commute, drag my tired self on public transport + reach home late, bathe and settle work again.
While I lament that I couldn't distinct work vs personal time at the start, I wasn't calculative about working extra hours. I am sure it's because I had a very supportive husband who settle my meals so I don't have to stress about getting my belly full in the midst of work chaos. Plus, having my own room helps - I can't imagine staying in my parents home quarrelling with my family over their noise and the lack of space. Despite my efforts, since it wasn't appreciated, I've learnt to pace myself and my work. #workisjustwork
Weekends were occasionally spent on window and grocery shopping and dining out. We also spent a good bulk of time cooking at home, ordering takeouts. Another thing I learnt during this period is - I don't need a lot of money to survive; my expenses cut down because I don't eat expensive lunches with colleagues; transport; buying new clothes or dying hair/dolling physical appearance since nobody will care how you look (they look equally disheveled on zoom anw)!
I really enjoy myself at home and I hope never to be forced to return to office. I don't care about social interactions, nor the pantry at office! I can stock it well with whatever I want too! However, I'm not sure if this wish can become a reality since the management would usually want to see and SCOLD us face to face. Speaking of scold, to digress, the ongoing NOC saga of toxic behaviour by Sylvia (da CEO) is actually a prevalent issue across ALL INDUSTRIES. Bosses scolding people, throwing their weights and files, calling names like retarded/stupid are common; and the voiceless and powerless are forced to live with it. I really hope there are platforms where people can do more exposé of toxic management/bosses in private sector like banking, consultancy, tech companies to public sector and schools etc. I'm sure the powerless majority would have a lot of angst to share. Glassdoor is not enough to expose certain toxic characters. These "leaders" need to be flagged and punished.
So when PM Lee mentioned the new normal will come in 3-6 months, I'm worried. As much as I wish for the speedy economic recovery and businesses to do well, I don't want to head back to office. I don't wish to interact with colleagues. I don't want to be forced to return physically to suit the needs and whims of the management who wants face-time and get instant reporting/results from subordinates. I'm dreading that day.
For now, I'd just enjoy my WFH while it lasts.....or maybe, see if I've the luck to try out remote working?