What you wear says a lot about the type of person you are, the pride you take in yourself and the company you work for when working outside of the home. Most freelancers work from home so don’t really think about the clothing they wear, however their uniform can make a big difference to their productivity.
Why you shouldn’t wear your pyjama’s to work
When first working from home it’s easy to slip into the ‘why do I have to get dressed? No one is going to see me’ routine. It’s easy to see why this seems like a viable option and means you don’t have to spend hours getting ready to impress work colleagues and look smart for clients, however the mindset of wearing the same clothing you go to bed in is often overlooked.
Everyone has heard of the bedtime routine where people wind down before sleep, not watching television or drinking/eating stimulants to promote a relaxed night’s sleep.
When you get changed into your pyjama’s you know that you are on your way to bed shortly ready for your waking brain to shut down for the night, but unfortunately wearing pyjama’s to work can mean you don’t leave the relaxed sluggish mindset.
The solution to this is getting into a routine whereby you work yourself up to getting ready for work whether you are leaving the house or not.
What clothing to avoid
Any items of clothing you would usually wear to relax such as jogging bottoms/sweat pants, the old reliable jumper and slippers should be avoided. The reason for avoiding such items of clothing are the same as why you should not wear your pyjama’s to start a day’s work. They put you into the wrong mindset.
The advantage of working from home means that you don’t have to wear high heels and suits, which can make you feel inhibited.
You can still wear comfortable clothing but should gear it more towards work clothes to make an easier transit.
What items should I wear?
Smart casual is fine for working; just swapping sweatpants for loose fitting smart trousers instead could get you ready for the day ahead. Rather than wearing heels or for men tight smart (and more than likely uncomfortable) shoes the switch could be to flats but definitely not trainers or slippers.
Is there research to support this?
There has been extensive research into the association of clothing to certain tasks or times of the day. One example of this would be wearing trainers to go for a run or a workout at the gym, putting a coat on before venturing outside and wearing a uniform for school or work. Your attire gives you as much a sense of routine as knowing when it’s a certain time you eat, catch the train or attend an appointment every week or month on the same day at the same time.
Structure is great for work, although at home it does not need to be as rigid.
Having certain times you work, wearing clothing specifically for when you work from home and setting times to work can make the day run smoother. It can also ensure those last minute video calls from clients are not put off until you are wearing something more suitable.