Let’s chat about how to productively work from home. Working from home is becoming a new normal for many of us so I wanted to share my best strategies to increase productivity at home. I’ll be the first to admit that working from home is not easy, but fortunately, it’s small adjustments that make a huge difference! When you work from home, mindset and self-discipline go a long way.
Set regular hours // Having a set schedule will keep you accountable for working during those times. It’ll be so tempting to start a bit earlier, end a little later, not take a break, or take too many breaks, etc. Give yourself working hours and treat them as such. Having a schedule will provide a sense of normalcy to your day. Obviously, the advantage of working from home is that you have flexibility if you need it, but try and be as disciplined as you can when it comes to your work hours.
Simple morning routine // Simplicity is essential, especially when it comes to a work from home morning routine. Create a schedule that will be easy to follow and easy to transition into a workday. Make yourself some coffee, shower, make your bed, get dressed, and do a quick workout. Don’t just jump straight into work! Be sure to give yourself space in the morning to prepare your mind and body. On the other hand, be sure not to drag your morning too long and lose essential working hours.
Dress to impress yourself // It is so tempting to stay in your pjs all day, trust me! There’s nothing I love more than an all day pj day, however, I’ve found that getting dressed makes a huge difference in mindset. I personally feel better and produce better when I feel put together. You owe it to yourself to look good, feel good, and produce fantastic content!
Create a separate workspace // Find a place in your home that is not typically a place where you lounge, relax, or that’s full of distractions. Make sure to stay away from your living room to minimize the temptation for a nap or an unintended Netflix binge. Create an office space that you can clock-in and clock-out.
Have self-awareness of productivity // When you WFH, you have a bit more flexibility. Schedule your workday to reflect your productivity. For example, I’m most productive midday, so I save my most intensive and creative tasks for after lunch when I know I can produce my best work. In the morning, when I’m a bit less inspired, so I focus on administrative stuff, emails, contracts, call-back, and schedule meetings.
Take Breaks // Set a timer for every hour or so and take a short around your neighborhood, make yourself some coffee, or do some quick stretches. My guess is that when you’re in the office, you take more breaks than you realize, for example, when your coworker stops in to chat when you go refill your water or buy a snack in the cafeteria. Breaks are healthy. Take them! I use the Healthy Browsing extension in Chrome. I love it! You can set reminders to blink, drink water, stretch, and check your posture.
Set boundaries // This is super important to do with others and yourself. Share your schedule with those who live with you and with your family and friends. Make sure other people realize that just because you’re at home doesn’t mean you’re not working. Our family and friends mean well when they want to talk or check-in, but they might not realize that you have deadlines or projects.
Interact with others // I’ll admit this is one that I’m still working on. When you work from home, it can be so easy to stay inside all day, and a full day or even days can pass without human interaction. Make sure that you’re taking care of yourself and allow space every day to be social and connect with others. This can be as easy as a Facetime or phone call to a friend just to check on them.
Find a mentor // This is especially important if you’re self-employed! Find someone who can keep you accountable and provide you with mentorship, coaching, and advice from an outside perspective. Having someone who can guide you, push you, and challenge you will help you and your business grow. Even if you’re not self-employed, I can’t stress enough the importance of having a mentor – a cheerleader.
End of the day routine // Establish a routine to end your day so that you END your workday. It’s so tempting to keep working on that project, do “just one more thing,” or work fifteen more minutes. No, no, end your day. For me, this means that at around 5 pm, I wrap-up what I’m working on, check my email one last time, review my calendar for the following day and write up my to-do list. The last thing I do is tidy-up my workspace. At 6 pm, I’m done, no excuses.
Do you work from home? Be sure to comment on your best strategies regarding how to productively work from home.
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