Most of you are spending more time at home these days. On days when you would be reporting to your desks, you find yourself on the couch glued to your laptop. You are trying to complete your task list without the built-in disciple for the home office. Though your expectations are the same, the environment is not.
Work from home sometimes blurs the boundaries between work and personal life. The key to being successful and productive at home is to create an environment that allows you to work to your fullest. Experienced Freelancers, online tutors, Graphic designers, YouTubers, Consultants, Video editors are already using these methods to stay focused and maintain a healthy work-life balance.
Work from Home Productivity
If you know the joys of working from home, you also know the joys of procrastination and lying on the couch. Well, of course, we favor a good nap, but a nap should be a break and not your default work mode. So, here are seven proven tips to stay productive while working from home.
1) Plan your Day
A sure shot way to keep up your productivity is to get smart about planning your day. Before you even start working, you need to fix your priorities for the day and devote specific timelines to each work. In fact, you can also plan your work a day in advance. Take some time out before going to bed at night, and plan your tasks for the week. You need to consider the following things when planning your day:
- Divide your work between high, moderate, and low priority
- Plan your day as per your energy cycle- do the hardest work when you are the most energetic and able to focus on your best ability
- Plan some rewards for yourself on completing your tasks
- Plan sufficient breaks throughout the day
2) Maintain Regular hours of Work
You need to maintain defined hours and timelines when working from home. Having clear guidelines on when to start the job, and when to call it a day helps maintain a healthy work-life balance. Though work from home offers a lot of flexibility, this should not mean working until the wee hours of the morning. Consider these tips when planning your work hours:
- Analyze when you are the most productive and schedule all-important work at that time
- Track your working hours
- Share your schedule with your colleagues and request them to follow the same
- Plan sufficient breaks for the day
- Most importantly, set a schedule and stick to it
3) Create a Healthy Morning Routine
Deciding that you will start working at a certain time is one thing, but creating a productive routine that guides you into your desk is another. That is why creating a healthy morning routine is essential for a productive day. A routine is more powerful than a clock and helps you start the day with full energy. Moreover, it becomes a natural way of your lifestyle. Consider the following ideas for a healthy morning routine:
- Start your day with gratitude
- Go for a nice jog and sweat out
- Hydrate and nourish yourself
- List down your tasks and plan your day ahead
4) Keep a Dedicated Office space
When you start working from home, it is really fascinating to work while lying on your bed or couch, but this takes a huge toll on your productivity. Hence, it is important to dedicate a desk and a separate space for office work. Your brain associates your desk with work time and shifts your energy accordingly. Consider the following when creating a separate office space:
- Organize your files and documents properly
- Ensure that you get plenty of light
- Have a comfortable desk and chair for work
- Keep a potted plant to create a healthy environment
- Use planners and calendars for maintaining your schedule
- Add some privacy to the room and allow nobody to disturb you
5) Work-Life balance
Maintaining a work-life balance helps you live your life to the fullest. While working from home sometimes seem very strenuous, it is important to compartmentalize both of these to stay productive throughout the day and reduce your stress. Don’t extend your work hours to the point of burning yourself out. Too much pressure leads to brain fog, which is not suitable for your growth. Learn about some tips on how to get rid of brain fog. Some ways to maintain a work-life balance include:
- Maintain a separate phone number only for office calls
- Schedule adequate breaks just like when you were in the office
- Take ‘real’ time off without bothering about office work
- Communicate your schedule with everyone
- Do not do household chores during work hours
6) Set Ground rules with your Family
Work from home offers a flexible working life where you can spend more time with your family, but that does not mean they disturb you during your work hours. Have some predefined ground rules with your family when you work from home- they cannot bother you for random things or ask you to do your laundry or take care of your pet. Having some ground rules will help you focus more on work and improve your productivity.
7) Don’t be too hard on yourself
To become a pro at working from home, you need to be kind to yourself. Sure, it takes a lot of focus to do a full-time office job from home, but you need to discipline yourself for that. That being said, you also need to focus on yourself and spend time on your thoughts. You do not have to take the entire work’s burden and drain yourself out. Some of the ways of doing that are:
- Take adequate lunch and coffee breaks in between work
- Take time out to learn new things and look for training opportunities
- Get out of your desk and spend time on something else- cooking, painting, etc.
- Take advantage of your perks and spend more time with your family
- Be kind and generous to yourself
- Don’t sit too long looking at a computer screen to avoid eye strain headaches
- Stay positive throughout
Shifting from a dedicated work environment to an unconventional home office is challenging, but with a few simple steps and changes to your routine, you will find yourself as productive as you were in office. Understand yourself and see what works for you the best. Moreover, don’t stress if you have had a hard day; instead, train yourself to do better. Working from home takes discipline, and it takes some time to settle in a new rhythm.
Kaivan Dave is an Entrepreneur. Who is passionate about eCommerce, Branding, and Leadership.