When people ask me what do I do and after I tell them I work from home they often say how lucky to be living their dream job. Oh yes, I feel lucky. Working from home is a great lifestyle choice. But there are many challenges that I have to face every day, one of which is not getting distracted and losing focus on my work.
Unlike the conventional office job, where you’re confined in your cubicle from 8am – 5pm everyday, when you work from home you are often distracted with home chores, your kids and neighbors. By the time you are done with chores and stuff, you will be surprise that it’s already past 5pm and you have not even finish a single task for your home based business. If you have just started working from home, and are in the same boat, don’t be discouraged. There are many ways to boost your productivity and stay focused on getting your work done when working at home.
9 tips for being more productive working from home
1. Setup your own office at home – You don’t have to occupy an entire room for an office but make an effort to set up a work area. Your workspace should have everything you need within reach to get you through the day. By simply creating area where your work gets done, instead of working on the kitchen table or sofa, it can help you focus.
2. Track your time by hand – Use a 15 minutes increment in writing down everything that you are doing at that moment, from 7am-7pm. So that at the end of the day you will able to identify when you slacked and when you were most productive so you can plan the next day better.
3. Invite someone else to work with you in your home – There are times when you can lose motivation when you are working from home alone. Sometimes, you get tempted to switch on your television or start doing the chores. Having a peer or a partner come over to work with you can help you maintain your focus.
4. Work from somewhere else – When household chores are calling and tempting you to stop working to do the laundry or clean the bathroom, then maybe it is time for you to get out of the house. You can head up to the library, coffee shops or somewhere quiet enough for you to work free from distractions.
5. Dress for Work – Changing from your pajamas and into a smart shirt or blouse will help signal the beginning of your workday. “It is also important to set your mindset that you are in a place of business and that you are a professional.” Says Claude Delgado, founder of D Graphic Solutions.
6. Reduce Web Clutter – Get rid of the unnecessary tabs on your browser other than those that are related to your work. Facebook, Twitter and Instagram should not be open unless you are done with your work for the day. These social media sites will take much of your time faster than you even know.
7. Self-discipline – It is I think the hardest to enforce, but if you trained yourself on the process you will be surprised on the amount of work you get done at the end of the day. So when you are about to get up for a drink or some snacks, just wait a little while more after you finish your task and you can reward yourself afterwards.
8. Answer phone calls and e-mails in batches – I always have a hard time ignoring my phone while working. This is especially true if it’s a family or special someone calling or texting me they just don’t get the concept that I’m working from home and not on hliday. They won’t stop calling until you pick up your phone. So try letting your calls go to your voicemail until you are ready to return them all in one session.
9. Reduce desk clutter – Get rid of all the clutter and the stuff you your desk that can mess with your concentration, like the mail, newspapers or your iPad. Removing these distractions will help you to work for longer and make every day of working from home more productive.
Following these tips will help you to stay focused on your work without the need of a boss to keep an eye on you. Remember that working from home is something many people dream of being able to do and a privilege. Just make sure you use your time wisely and stay productive so you can continue enjoying the work from home dream.