There are now millions of people working from home due to the innovator called COVID-19. While many of us used to work from home occasionally to be there for a property inspection or await a furniture delivery, now anyone who can work from home IS working from home.
And if you are new to this phenomenon, you may have found that it takes some focus to get well – Focused! So if you are new to all this, here are 7 productivity tips for working from home. Learn these to help you remain focused and get on with the work at hand.
7 Productivity Tips For Working From Home
Designate a special work area
Create a workspace that is just for you during your working hours. It need not be a different spot to your old home desk, but it may need a quick renovation. Now it the time to give it a spring clean: remove anything that could be a distraction, give it a good clean, and put back just those few things that remind you of a calming workspace.
Establish a routine to start your workday
In my workspace, I have a candle, a trophy, and some rosemary essential oil. Rosemary helps focus the brain. So when I come into my workspace, I light my candle, acknowledge my trophy, and inhale a breath of rosemary. That routine sets my intention to start the workday. There are more things you could do, so find a routine that fits in with your day and your intentions.
Plan your day to be productive
Whether you use an online diary or a paper diary, each day should start with some basic planning. List at least 3 important things you need to accomplish that day. If there is one that kind of makes you squirm, that is probably the one you should start with. Think of this one as slaying your dragons early! Get that task out the way, and you can bask in that achievement.
Mel Robbins talks about planning her day at the end of the previous day, while she is still very much in work mode – otherwise known as The Zone. She takes a few minutes and outlines what needs to be done tomorrow.
Dress for success (at least from the waist up)
Chances are you will be on Zoom, Skype, Messenger or Microsoft Teams at some stage today, so make sure you are looking the part from when you start the day. As the camera is only going to show your top half, that should be the best-dressed half during working hours at least. You will also feel more like being productive when you add this to your working from home routine. If you are a woman spending a lot of time at the computer, one way to give your back and shoulders extra support is by wearing a good posture support bra.
Avoid distractions by avoiding social media
Unless you work in marketing or advertising, chances are social media is not required during the day. One way to avoid it is to set up a work browser, so it has no bookmarks, tabs or notifications. If you are using Chrome, click on your photo or icon in the top right, then press “Add” under Other People. I called mine “Me @ Work” You can also use a chrome extension called Momentum which helps you avoid distractions and even gives you motivating quotes each time to open a new tab.
Keep up with team meetings
One of the ways you were productive in the office was because of team meetings holding you to account. So keep having those meetings, just make them online and keep them brief. If you find it difficult to be accountable to yourself, then be accountable to your boss or to the team. You can also pay it back, by holding others to account.
Schedule breaks in while working from home
Just because you can work all day does not mean that you should. Schedule brief breaks in during the day, which can coincide with hanging out washing, weeding the veggie patch, or phoning a friend. Just keep these breaks brief, so you have left time for a proper lunch break. At lunchtime, try and get outside for a walk, or do some exercise. I found this lady on YouTube who is fabulous.
If these productivity tips for working from home are not enough to get you fully focused, you could also consider wearing a brain training device that offers a Concentration mode. The Bellabee is one such device and helps me focus for an hour at a time.