While working from home has its benefits, there may be some difficulties in keeping focused and separating your work life from your home life. It’s important to find a balance between these two and create your own healthy environment. We’ve compiled a list of things that help us remain just as productive from home and hope our insights can serve as a reference for you, too.
1. Have a routine.
Set some adequate working hours. Wake up, shower, make a quick breakfast and get into your business attire. You should even plan on taking a few breaks throughout the day, whether it’s a walk around the neighborhood or chatting with some friends. Chances are, having a routine will keep you balanced.
2. Define your “work space.”
Having a distinct area to work where you know you can stay focused is one of the most important aspects to consider. Set aside your own workspace where you know you can get work done, as it helps create a boundary between your professional and personal life. Whatever place you choose, make sure that you can remain productive. Referring back to our recommendation of “having a routine,” if you plan on being away or taking a break from your dedicated workspace, we recommend you mention that to your clients so that if they hear a plane buzzing by or a baby crying, it’s not unexpected or awkward.
3. Get rid of background noise.
While many of us think we are “superhuman” and can work with the TV on or the dog whining in the crate, distracting background noise can slow productivity. It takes time for our brain to process that extra sound, resulting in a prolonged task. We suggest giving your dog a bone to nibble on to keep him quiet, and you can always TiVo your show to watch later. Some of us here at Mediabarn find that absolutely no noise makes things a little too quiet, though. We enjoy light background music while we work, streaming from some of our favorite sites including Songza, Pandora, and iHeartRadio.
4. Block distracting websites.
Whether it’s social media, online shopping, or viewing YouTube videos, these sites serve only one purpose during your work day: to distract. It’s likely that they are unrelated to what your task at hand is, so consider blocking them during work hours using applications like SelfControl (for Mac users) or Cold Turkey. Just like you wouldn’t spend hours at a client site on Facebook, the same should go for when working from home.
5. Keep yourself motivated.
It’s important to keep goals set in case you fall off track. There may be times where you find yourself doing the laundry or starting your work day a little later than expected. By giving yourself short-term and long-term goals, you always have a set schedule to reference to and help keep yourself organized.
If you utilize these tips all together, working from home can be a doable, successful and enjoyable experience. You’ll be able to find a comfortable balance, which will yield to a better workflow and result in satisfaction for you and your clients.