Waking hours are now Working hours!! This Work From Home is nothing like I expected.

Waking hours are now Working hours!! This Work From Home is nothing like I expected.

This is my life’s first lockdown. I am sure yours too and I wish it’s the last one. We hopefully we don’t have to face any such situation again in our life. This situation has changed a lot of things we otherwise do. Some things that we enjoy and rest because it’s a norm. Like going to work every day at a certain time.

It’s not very long off that our entire team was behind our super boss to grant us at least one weeks Work From home every month. And here we are, waiting to get back to the routine of working from office, isn’t it true for you? Am I the only one exited going back to work from office?

The regular work from home is very different from this Covid Times work from home. What you don’t believe me?

Nicholas Bloom a well-known researcher who has worked upon showing benefits of WFH also believe me, I mean he also believes WFH in covid-19 Pandemic is not same as the regular WFH.

With kids at home

No matter how much disciplined and sensitive they are that you are working the disturbance and noise will always be there.

If the child is an infant or toddler who otherwise is taken care by a nanny or goes to day-care. Is at home now. And while attending their needs every now and then leaves you lesser time to concentrate on your work.

If you are living with your roommates, they might have their calls, office work or nothing at all to do and might keep bothering you.

With no cook, house help, day care, school, nanny, dog walker, dry cleaner each and every big or small all chores are on you to do.

Fear and uncertain atmosphere

And not to forget, with Covid-19 the constant fear of uncertainty is taking a toll on your mental health, no matter how much you want to avoid the news about it, but the social media doesn’t rest up. It keeps reminding you how close are you to death. With lockdown in picture you have to access how much monthly stock you are left with? Pet food is not in the list of essentials so no one will deliver it even if you place an order, so how are you going to manage?

All this and many and much more, in such mental state how are you going to concentrate and be productive.

Office and home working environment differs

Rather than understanding this part, that the employee is working from home due to a certain situation the employers and senior staff is loading them with work.

When we go to office, we work for 9-10 hours, with stipulated multiple big or small breaks. Lunch break, sutta break, tea break etc.

At home there is no schedule, the ‘Walking hour’ is the ‘working hour’.

It starts from may be 8:30 am and goes till 12 at night.

The existence of weekend and its importance is lost. Officially there was a leave/ holiday for Ramnavami. If it would have been regular office and no WFH then we would have enjoyed a holiday for Ramnavami but instead it was business as regular, the work happened just like any other day. NO one even bothered to mention that we are working on a holiday.

Managers and bosses are thinking anyways the employee is at home only, so how does it matter if it’s a weekday or weekend? But the family is suffering the employee is getting frustrated.

I do not see my husband for the whole day unless I barge into his room to give him lunch and tea or may be a bowl of snack or fruit. We talk more when he goes to office than we are talking now a days, since this mandatory WFH thing has started.

My father-in-law finally asked me a question. He said,”when the world is headed towards recession and India depends on outsourced business mostly. Most of that is stand still or slow. And the world is busy in fighting Covid-19 then what are you guys so busy with?”

We don’t value things, when we do not need them

Another aspect of current WFH is very different, we have been forced to WFH. Although we wanted to do it as we always crib about not getting to spend enough time with family, traffic jams and all the known reasons but humans want the power of decision making. If it’s by choice I will be happy, if it’s forced, I will crib. Or maybe the psychology can also be that we value things when they are unachievable once we have it, then it loses its sheen. Just like ‘ghar Ki murgi dal barabar’. Although it might not be true for everyone and we cannot generalize.

When I spoke to many of my friends, I realized that it’s not just me or my husband who is facing this trauma of waking hours as working hours, its everyone around. Everyone is going mad. So, my dear friends and readers, it’s the Fear that is driving you crazy. Not fear of getting infected by the virus, but what will happen when this storm settles down. How badly the economy will be hit? The recession will be there, how much will it affect us directly? will it be bad than 2009? Layoffs, when and how many from all size of companies? Will my company also do a layoff? What if the decision is in my direct managers hands? Am I doing enough? Will he kick me out? All this but not limited to, there is a black cloud known as unsure future is making us slog, more than ever.

Why do you think we are doing this?

We are going overboard so that we have a valid point to prove. If such time comes, we can show the trackers, deal conversion rations, appreciation emails from partners and clients and everything under the sky to save our job. Because believe me or not, and like it or not this is the job that’s paying our bills month after month. Do not mind but mark my words, we the middle class live every month from salary to salary. So, no matter what we will slog and save our jobs.

This WFH is unlike the regular WFH, these are testing time with Virus and without it too.

I am sure you have more stories to share. I am waiting to hear, how is this work from home treating you and your family.

This Post Has 40 Comments

  1. Nitya chawla

    We all are living different kind of life than usual in lockdown and even after this we have learned things…Each coin has two faces and you have discussed both beautifully.

  2. Raksha

    Ya I am trying to get some routine in my life. It’s been hard working from home and my life has become the same where waking up is when I start work, which is sad.

    1. Rahul Prabhakar

      You are right! This work from home has become the new normal, no matter whether we like it or not. Lots of introspection needs to be done whether this can continue long term. Once the pandemic is over, it will take a few months to return back to normalcy.

      1. Swati

        I can completely relate with each and every word of yours. Things are not easy. It is easy said than done.. That this is new normal, accept it ,but it is quite challenging. The productivity and quality is getting affected but earlier we learn to cope up with it better it is for us.

  3. Subhashish Mandal

    So much of what u have written is happening of our daily lives. Much more complex when your actually married with a family. Being single its been such a change and reading through put so much in words of a new world

    1. Snigdha

      This is exactly happening in our daily lives and what exactly the WFH looks like .. Very nice write up ..I enjoyed.

  4. Sundeep

    I think work from home t is going to be the norm for times to come. I really hating working from home. And it is more difficult if kids are at home.

    1. Pallavi watermark

      I can so relate to this post we hardly see each other during lunch or break times as I’m busy with my little one and when I’m free he’s on a call.

      This is life .

  5. Snigdha

    Work from home us really difficult with small kids at home . it is really tough to manage both.

    1. Urvashi

      Ujjwal I totally relate to it. In fact I commend everyone who is wfh with kids. They are doing double duty. The importance of holidays is definitely lost.

  6. Geetanshi Arora

    I have always worked from home but at that time I used to be home alone and there were no house chores involved. Also, there were no tv news sound 24×7. Things have changed

  7. I swear it is one of the most difficult things so far. Connectivity issues bother me the most.

  8. Rahul Prabhakar

    You are absolutely right! Working from home is the new normal. We did this to ourselves and now we are paying for this 😏

  9. Docdivatraveller

    A WFH mom has the toughest life. There is no clear boundary and productivity takes a toss. I am struggling too.

  10. Hansa Kajaria

    Totally agree to you. The current work from home situation is way different from the otherwise wfh situation. I can see my sister in law who is struggling to look after her kids, cook, maintain the house n work n be on work calls all the time. Its craze.

  11. Manisha Garg

    Yes rightly pointed out by you this WFH this complex. Maintaining a balance has become a bit difficult. I agree with you fear is playing a huge role.

  12. Subu M

    I find that so much of how and what we choose in this scehdule is upto us really and how we draw the lines. Al doing that a lot of myself and unplugging to keep semblance of control

  13. Surbhi prapanna

    Honestly you had said my inner voice and I m struggling the same way as you had mentioned here. Specially the charm of weekend has lost completely and all day feel same with this forced situation. hope this situation resolved soon and we get back our normal lives.

  14. Ishieta

    oh! you have nailed it on the head! i swear, i have forgotten what taking breaks used to be like! Now I take loo breaks and go to make coffee breaks and then back to the desk!
    You are right, at this time, it seems like we dont have an option.. .though i wonder if we are all just functioning from a space of fear?

    1. Ujjwal Mishra

      Hope things get better from here

  15. Abha

    Yeah this wfh is not easy especially little kids running around. I think people are also missing their workplace and face to face interaction with peers.

  16. Raks

    It’s so sad that I have lost the importance of a weekend. It’s like any other day and as you said my working hours start as soon as I get up and it’s kind of sad. I am trying to get some routine and change in my struggle everyday.

  17. Anahita Irani

    I totally agree with you. These work from home has no specific timings. From dawn to dusk and beyond it’s just physical and mental work both. Loved reading your post.

  18. mahekg

    As complex is the current situation, the current WFH is also different with added responsibilities and as said we have forgotten the clock full day goes by just working something or the other.

  19. mummatalks

    Yes the new WFT is completely and absolutely diff frm what it was earlier. With office work n house n kids work all to be done together is not an easy task at hand.

  20. Ok this is the blog I have been waiting to read. So aptly described the WFH situation and how it is different from the regular ones.

  21. Gaya3

    Yes, so true. Can understand perfectly well as going through the same. But I still have a feeling in mind that what we humans are facing are some kind of God’s way of teaching him His wrath of our over exploitation, carelessness, harming nature and all. But yeah, for me also WFH with a toddler is very difficult

  22. Vishakha sodha

    This is so true! It is just getting crazier every day

  23. Absolutely, this kind of wfh is entirely different, looks like the to-do list is never ending, and when we tick off most of the tasks few more emerge from nowhere. Hope it end soon and we all find our normal way of working back.

  24. Gunjan Upadhyay

    Absolutely true with all your pointers here, life has changed a lot with this new normal, the work list is like huge every day,

  25. Rajshree S

    So glad that someone pointed it out. This work from home has been nothing but taxing on me and everyone I know. Weekends have certainly lost their charm as the work never ends.

  26. Taranpreet

    Absolutely agree to what you said. Work from home is no more like what it was in the past. It just is getting difficult day by day. Also with kids around it’s just another story

  27. princy

    this wfm has taken its toll on me physically as well as emotionally. my back has been really bad and emotionally not meeting my friends has been challenging. on the other side, I have got very good time with my family.

  28. Dr Bushra

    Work from home is just for name sake instead it’s put a lot burden mentally on employees. Also the future is unpredictable where we are headed

  29. Vaishali

    The new norm I suppose and yes, it is overwhelming. The charm of free-time, break time, weekend fun- it’s all lost in the hope to pace up and outshine or survive. We just got to carry on till another ‘new’ norm sets it, I suppose!

  30. Rakhi Parsai

    Oh don’t ask. WFH has almost killed my enthusiasm to cook, clean, look good, have fun with family, and everything else. Days are filled with irritation more than ever. I am really not liking the situation though only plus is the fact that families are together and safe with each other.

    Despite having so much time together at home we live a different life altogether. Husband stranded in one room and kids strange in other and the women of the house stranded in kitchen or somewhere in corner cleaning or doing stuff.

  31. Amrit Kaur

    Yes it is not that easy but over the time I have made a schedule and I have fixed working hours for work and the rest for me and family or home.

  32. Judy Morris

    Yes I so agree amidst this critical conditiion as well the private firms are loading the employee with work like the normal times. My husband had to start going to office merely after 1 month of lockdown coz his is a big company and they took permission from govt. 🙁

  33. Roma

    I am glad you said this Ujjwal, I have been horrified by this pressure too, all balance has gone for a toss.

  34. Kavita Singh

    I completely agree with you, the work from home during COVID times need all the more patience and planning. There are days when I feel overburdened and take a break, we have to learn and adjust to these times.

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