Working from home can truly be an amazing convenience, but at times, it can be a real drag. Working alone, spending most of your days and nights in one place, and the countless number of distractions are something to get use to. But, working from home doesn’t always have to be this way. Below are 9 tips to stay productive and sane while working from home.
1. Don’t be Late
I know you want to sleep in – but don’t do it! Whether 8:00 am or 4:00 pm, start your workday at the same time you would need to get to the office so you can get into a routine. And stick with it!
2. Natural Light & Open Space
You work from home now, so lose the cubical and the fluorescent lighting. Make sure your home office has a great amount of natural sunlight. Keep the shades clear each day and open the windows when you can. Also, make sure you have enough space to stretch out. Don’t leave yourself cramped in a corner, but open to the entire room.
3. A Dedicated Work Space
Pick a bedroom or area in your home that you can dedicate as your office, and keep it that way. Use it only for work purposes and nothing else. Keep work and home separate.
4. Get Inspired
So, you’ve lost the cubical and florescent lighting…but you’re still missing something. Inspire yourself. Listen to your favorite music or even an audio book (unless you’re easily distracted). Paint the room a vibrant color, add posters or pictures of things that inspire and make you happy.
5. Stay Off Social Media
Unless it’s a part of your job, just stay off (especially if you’re friends with your boss or other co-workers).
6. Take Breaks
Don’t over work yourself. Like starting on time, pick a time of day you plan to take a lunch break. Break for 30 minutes or so and get work off your mind. Then, come back more refreshed and alert.
7. Socialize with Co-Workers
Let’s face it, when you work from home, you lose the social aspect of work; meeting new people and making new friends. If you’re already emailing, instant messaging or on the phone with co-workers, take a couple minutes to chat about something other than work and get to know everyone.
8. Know When to Call it a Day
Just as it is important to start on time – stop on time. Pick a time every day you plan to “head home” and do your best to make it happen.
9. Play Hard (After Working Hard)
One of the hardest aspects of working from home is that you’re always at the office. Create a work life balance that makes you happy by starting work on time in a dedicated space, taking occasional breaks throughout the day and ending the day on a consistent basis. After work hours, spend as much time as you can out of the house with family and friends.
How do you stay productive when working at home? How do you manage to stay sane? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments!