For some of us, the idea of working remotely within the comfort of our own home is the perfect embodiment of a work/life balance. However, if you find it difficult to focus and get things done outside of the office, working from home can be easier said than done. Here are our top tips to help you maintain your productivity and sanity while you’re working from home.
Set up your environment
1. Designate a safe working area
Make sure where you set up is quiet, well-lit and private. Choose a suitable temperature for the room as this can quickly become irritating if you’re too hot or cold. A comfortable chair will help your posture and productivity too.
2. Separate work from leisure.
Avoid working in a part of the home where you would ordinarily relax i.e. on your sofa or bed (your neck will hurt, too). It is important that you have a place to retreat to once your working day is done, as you would after a day at the office.
3. Sort your supplies.
Have all your materials you will need for the day at the ready e.g. pens and paper, waste bin, notepads. It will save a lot of turning the house upside down looking for these in the long run.
4. Turn off the TV
Play some suitable music softly in the background to create a calm ambience instead- you don’t need to watch that episode of Come Dine with Me.
5. Dress for work
Wearing what you would normally wear can help, pyjamas are comfortable, but they don’t help you feel motivated.
6. Stay hydrated
Have a glass of water by you and keep drinking throughout the day, staying hydrated helps you stay focused.
Manage homeworking time
7. Have a routine.
It can be lonely and a procrastinating dream – housework can seem interesting- but that load of laundry doesn’t have a deadline.
8. Write a to-do list
Write a to-do list of tasks you need to complete by close of play and attach times to your tasks if possible. This way you can build a realistic picture of everything you want to achieve during the day.
9. Block your time out
Set yourself tasks and complete them within the set timeframes – these small wins will keep your day structured and stop you from starting several tasks at the same time and feeling like you haven’t really achieved anything.
10. Take Breaks!
All work and no play is not a good strategy. Distractions are one thing but avoiding a little time off to break up the day and refocus is quite another.
Guidance and good practice
11. Keep Connected!
Whether it’s a quick call to the office to check in, instant messaging or Skype, stay in touch. This can avoid feelings of being isolated or out of the loop.
12. Keep the kids distracted
If you have children or young people to consider when you are working at home, plan childcare or activities to keep them busy.
13. Set boundaries with friends and family
It is important that they know you’re working and that it isn’t appropriate to pop round or phone you for a chat during your working day.
14. Take your lunch!
Make sure you take regular breaks or a regular lunch break at the very least (going al-desko in your dining room does not count).
15. Get some air
It’s important to get up and walk around occasionally. If you have an outside area and can, go out and get some fresh air.
16. Get the kettle on
Let’s get this done!
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