Is Working from Home More Productive?
Many of us have been fortunate to work from home during the pandemic. Working remotely comes with the perks of keeping on your pajamas, watching TV while you eat lunch, and overall having more freedom. However, with extra freedom comes more chances for distraction and inefficiency.
Don’t let your working from home derail your work ethic. Here are our top tips on how to be productive working from home!
18 Tips for Working at Home Productively
Designate an Area as Your Workspace
It can be tempting to let your “work area” sprawl from your desk to your bed to your sofa. But when you’re letting yourself work anywhere within your home, you are likely to find yourself not actually getting much work done. Create a work-from-home station for yourself and limit work to that area to hone your focus.
Personalize Your Workspace
Your workspace should be a place you enjoy being. Otherwise, it will get too tempting to leave and do something else at home. Make sure you have a comfortable chair to sit in and a few personal touches like a potted plant and some family photos. This will make being in your designated work area easier and even enjoyable.
Clean Your Work Area
It’s hard to concentrate on anything when there are dirty clothes, piles of books, and other odds and ends surrounding you. Clutter is distracting. So before you begin your work routine every day, make sure that the area around your work station is clean and clutter-free to help you focus.
Dress to Impress—Even if It’s Just Yourself!
Although getting dressed in your best business suit to work from home may be extreme, looking the part helps you be the part. Wearing loungewear every day will make you feel like being lazy. So instead, make a habit of dressing up a little as if you were going to the office. This will get you into the right headspace for your workday.
Turn on Your Webcam
When you have virtual meetings, turn on your webcam. Letting your coworkers see you will enhance your virtual interactions. And if you dress to impress, you have no reason to hide!
Find Your Most Productive Hours
While some people might roll out of bed energetic and ready to crush their task list, others don’t hit their stride with work until mid-day. There’s no right or wrong period of the day to be most productive—but knowing when you’re most productive can help you accomplish more. Try to save your most difficult tasks for the time you know you’ll be the most productive.
Maintain Regular Work Hours
Although you may want to save the most difficult tasks for your productive times, you should still try to keep your regular work hours. If you work 9 to 5 at the office, work 9 to 5 at home. Then when 5 o’clock hits, log out and truly set work aside until tomorrow.
Working from home is hard enough, but it’s even more challenging when you throw kids and/or a spouse into the mix. Have a conversation with the people you live with—whether they’re kids, spouses, or roommates—about how you can and can’t spend your time at home. This will help prevent them from interrupting you or asking you for help with things around the house when you should be working.
Get Up and Get Out
Although it might be difficult as we head into the colder months, going outside for a short walk can help clear your head and make you more productive. Most people spend a little time at the office walking whether it’s to get to the bathroom or the break room. By spending even 10 minutes walking, you’re imitating your office experience while getting a little extra exercise in.
Do Your Chores Later
Is there a dishwasher to unload? Laundry to unfold? It can wait. You need to finish your workload first and then you can deal with your daily chores. Splitting your focus between house and work duties isn’t beneficial for you or anyone else.
Don’t Isolate Yourself
Even if you have some coworkers who aren’t your favorite people, working without them for several months has probably made you more than a little lonely. Don’t ignore those feelings of loneliness. Try to spend some time checking in with a coworker or two online or over the phone. This will help you break up your workday nicely and feel closer to your coworkers even when you can’t be with them face-to-face.
Invest in Noise-Canceling Headphones
If you live on a busy street or have loud neighbors, working from home presents a whole new set of challenges. Make sure you have a good set of noise-canceling headphones at the ready to block out the outside world.
Everyone deserves a break, even when you’re working remotely. Make sure when you’re filling out your daily to-do list that you give yourself some time to pause and relax. You could try doing this by taking a short break after a certain length of time, such as 90 minutes of work or simply when you can feel that you’re mentally hitting a wall.
Track Your Time
If you’re finding that it seems impossible to get things done at home, try tracking how much time you spend on each task in a day. When you are forcing yourself to write down how you spend every minute of your time, you may discover when and why you’re getting distracted. This will help you create effective strategies on how to be productive working from home.
Making a schedule for your day is great—but it’s no good if you aren’t being realistic. Will it really take you only an hour to do that task you’ve spent a week dreading? Probably not. Make all your work schedules realistic so you don’t end up getting frustrated and falling behind.
Don’t Get Sucked into Your Inbox
If you aren’t careful, being on email can become a never-ending responsibility. Just as you send one email, another new one comes in and you feel the need to reply ASAP. There are other more pressing tasks to get done, so it’s important you put email in its place. Only allow yourself to be on email for certain times of day to make the most of your workday.
Create a Habit for Clocking Out
Figuring out how to end your workday when you’re at home can be challenging. Many people just get up and go to the kitchen to make dinner. Figure out a simple action you can perform at the end of every workday to signal you’re done working. Maybe this is putting some work files in a drawer or simply telling your spouse that you’re “clocking out.” This will help you create boundaries and maximize productivity.
Upgrade Your Internet if Needed
Unfortunately, no one knows how long the pandemic will last. If you don’t have good internet right now, you can’t afford to wait any longer to upgrade. The internet speed that's right for your work needs is essential to accomplishing the maximum amount of work! Nomad Internet can provide you with a strong, reliable connection while you work remotely. When you can count on your internet, you’ll be so much more productive.
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