With remote technology and freelancing on the rise, more people are working from home than ever before. If you’ve ever done it, you know how easy it is to get distracted with every day, household activities, and things. You’ve undoubtedly learned that it’s easier to get the work done when there’s no one around, either.
If you know that you’re going to be working from home for an extended period and it’s not just a one-off day here and there, some fundamental tips that can help you make your day more productive. Working from home does take dedication and determination. Otherwise, you might end up in front of the television, with a snack, watching your favorite TV show.
Create a Home Office Away from Distractions
If you set up your office close to the kitchen or living room, you’re going to find that you’re more tempted to snack every hour, or put off important tasks just because there’s something on TV. When your home office gets set up away from the distractions, you’re more apt to focus on everything that needs to get done and treat it as if you were in your office at the office. Keep your snacks and TV watching for when the work day is finished, that way your efficiency is higher, and you’re not left cutting projects close to their due date.
Stick to a Manageable Schedule
To keep from eating into your personal time, it’s essential to build, and stick to, a set number of hours that you devote to work each day. More often than not, when you’re working in an office, you’re provided a work schedule, or you show up in the morning, instead of at noon. When you have set hours, it could keep you from developing an unhealthy obsession with always being on call. You might work from home, but that doesn’t mean work is your home life. You can also use the hours to remind people in your house that you have work to do, and it would be easier without interruptions during those specified hours.
Get Dressed as You’re Going to the Office
When you wake up in the morning, you might be tempted to stay in your sweats or pajamas all day long because you’re working from home, and no one can see you. However, studies have suggested that entrepreneurs who work from home get more work done when they get up, get showered, and get dressed like they’re going to the office.
Creating that psychological barrier essentially tricks your brain into work mode. When you’re staying in your comfy clothes, there’s not going to be any separation between home and work. On top of that, you’re less likely to fall back asleep if you’re getting up to get dressed instead of staying in your robe.
Make a Daily Plan
Staying on task and keeping yourself from getting distracted is much easier when you have a plan to follow and have set goals for yourself. When you understand exactly what needs to be done and when it needs to get done by, you’re heightening your chances of accomplishing your projects without having them leak into your personal time.
Psychological studies have suggested that when you check in on your plan and your goal progress, you’re more likely to accomplish them. Prioritize the tasks that have to be done for that day and define all of the work you need to put in to finish it. Plans help keep you on track and hold you accountable for what isn’t getting done.
Do Not Disturb
Working from home can prove to be challenging when you have a family; therefore, it’s imperative that you set clear boundaries with your family members, spouse, and children. It’s very easy to get distracted when you have friends or family stopping by your home office for a chat.
You can consider creating a specific identifier to let the other occupants of your house know that you shouldn’t be disturbed because you’re in work mode. The indicator can be as simple as a note on the door, pre-determined work hours, noise-canceling headphones, a closed door, or more. Whichever you choose, make sure that the people in your house know what it means when they see it.
From an efficiency standpoint, working from home presents many challenges, but once you get the hang of it, you might be more productive than you’ve ever been before. It’s up to you to create your work routine, stick with it, and know when to stop working. Minimize your distractions, keep your work place in check. Many freedoms that come with working from home, but if you’re not getting any work done, you’re just going to end up back at the office or with too much on your plate.
What other tips do you suggest for work-from-home employees? Leave a comment.