Struggling to get work done at home? Here are the best tips for success
As we all know, due to self-isolation and social distancing, lots of us are having to stay home and work remotely. If you’ve never worked from home before, this might have sounded great at first… but odds are you’ve quickly realized how difficult it is to stay as on-task as you are when you’re in the office!
I often do some of my work at home (and obviously I currently do this every day!) so I’ve come up with some tips over the years that help me stay productive and accomplished in the comfort of my own home. And trust me, I get it – I have a dog, I’ve raised kids, I’ve got social media – I’ve been through all the distractions you may be facing! So, let’s get to these tips.
1) Make a permanent workplace for yourself
It’s extremely helpful to carve out some dedicated workspace for yourself. If you’re fortunate enough to have a room that you can work in, perhaps a home office or a room that the rest of the family can go without during the day, this is best since you can shut the door and literally shut out all outside distractions. Maybe this isn’t possible for you – that’s okay! You can still carve out workspace for yourself, perhaps on the dining room table or in the kitchen. It’s best if this is a place where you can leave your work stuff so that you can get into the habit of “going to work” and “leaving work” — a place that you can physically walk away from at the end of the day.
2) Invest in technology
Even if working from home is a temporary arrangement for you, these months of doing so will be much more productive and much less frustrating if you have everything you need at your fingertips. It’s important to invest in the things you need so that you don’t disrupt your day by having to retrieve supplies or put your work on hold until you have them. One example of this is your internet speed – it’s important for your internet to be at a speed sufficient for you to get your work done. If you’re having virtual meetings and using Wi-Fi all day long, you may find yourself having to upgrade to better Wi-Fi as this will take more internet than regular social media or internet browsing. Other examples of important tools may include good printers, shredders, and any software you need to accomplish your job efficiently and effectively.
3) Organize your day
Have clearly set start and end times for your day. One of the worst things you can do when you’re working from home is to let your day extend into your evening. Don’t compromise your personal time! Ensure you take breaks, but be diligent about setting out specific time for work (e.g. 9-5) and sticking to it.
What about distractions?
As I’m sure you know, there are also plenty of distractions when working from home that are there regardless of where you work and how you organize your day. I have more tips on how to minimize those distractions and how to ensure you stick to your work when you’re at home. I won’t get into it all here, but I’ve created a video over on YouTube that goes into some more tips for working from home. Be sure to check it out if you’re working remotely right now!