If you’re among the millions of people working from home right now, you likely enjoy the advantages it entails. Not only does it mean spending more time with your family, but a work-from-home setup also gives you high levels of comfort. Then again, being comfortable isn’t the same as being productive. As you work remotely, you are vulnerable to a number of factors that could disrupt your work rhythm. If you want to be more productive at home, then you might want to apply these important tips:
- Find the perfect workspace
The first thing you will need to do is to find a spot that’s quiet and comfortable. You don’t want to be in places where you could hear a lot of noise. Consider converting an unused room into a temporary home office. If noise isn’t too much of a problem, at least pick a work area you are comfortable in. Make sure that it is well-ventilated and provides the right amount of natural light.
- Avoid working from your bed
Most people would prefer working as they lay on their bed. As comfortable as it seems, you will find it hard to get anything done if your body feels more relaxed than it should. For this reason, you should reserve your bed for your off-hours. Turning it into an office doesn’t exactly provide your mind and body extra incentive to work hard. For this reason, it’s always best to limit work-related activities at your desk.
- Pace yourself
Work still works, so the possibility of getting burnt out lingers. Consider taking occasional breaks from your workspace as you would at the office. If you have a lot of things that you need to handle for the week, deal with them one at a time. While putting yourself on overdrive helps you accomplish smaller tasks faster, it still won’t help you when it comes to completing long-term goals. Burnout can diminish the quality of the work you put in, so it’s best to pace yourself while you are at home.
- Personalize the atmosphere
The good thing about a work-from-home setup is not just the level of comfort you get, but also the chance to decorate and design your “office” as you see fit. You may not get a chance to do this sort of thing at the office, so you might as well make the most of it by adding action figures or figurines on your desk, surrounding yourself with indoor plants, or even getting an executive chair. The possibilities are endless, so focus on adding a touch of inspiration to your work-from-home environment
- Organize your desk
While you can always do whatever you want with your workspace, it’s important to keep clutter to a minimum. You wouldn’t want to waste time looking for files, notes, and tools. Get a personal desk organizer where you can store necessary supplies and documents so they are always within reach. Moreover, you need to discard or at least store away anything you don’t need anymore. Having too many things on your desk will only hamper your progress and add to your stress.
- Keep a list
If your employer assigns you with a large set of tasks to complete for the week, it would be difficult to determine the things you need to prioritize. An easy way to get around this issue is to prepare a daily task list. You can note the details about the different types of tasks you need to tackle through the week in a bullet journal or to-do list. This allows you to maximize your time on critical activities or assignments. For tasks that take longer to complete, you can divide these into chunks or sub-goals on a planner. In case you are not into listing down your tasks on paper, you can use productivity apps like Google Keep or Trello to write your priorities and track your progress.
- Get help with household activities
Since you are working from home, you might be tempted to handle a few errands. While you can make use of your free time to process your bills electronically and cook lunch, you shouldn’t spend too much of your energy on household activities that take a little longer, like fixing a broken faucet or dealing with a rat infestation. You can always hire local specialists like a professional plumber in Boston or a New Jersey pest control company to help you manage these problems while you focus on completing your tasks. However, in case you have kids at home, you will need to minimize their exposure to the outside world where a pandemic is still active. In this case, consider opening this up to your boss or asking your partner to help out.
- Develop a routine
If you are having trouble focusing on work, you might as well create a healthy daily routine. What do you do first thing in the morning? How do you end another workday while you are at home? Coming up with a routine prime your mind and helps you stay productive throughout the day. Just make sure not to overdo it and give yourself space to try out something new, as repetition can become daunting over time.
- Keep in touch with coworkers
If you feel like you are at a dead end, you might feel the need to contact your colleagues and ask them to walk you through a certain task. Not only does this help you from getting stuck, but social interactions (even when they are virtual) also have a positive effect on your mindset. On the side, you can set up Zoom meetings with your teammates where you can ask each other your thoughts about working from home.
- Listen to music
If you are the type of person who works well with music, then prepare a personal work-from-home playlist and let it fill the indoor environment. This should help you stay “in the zone” and prevent you from getting distracted. Consider instrumental music you can vibe to as you work.
Working from home could be an advantage or a disadvantage depending on how well you manage your time and create a focused environment. Consider the tips above and take full control of the experience.