11 Tips to Boost Productivity When Working From Home

11 Tips to Boost Productivity When Working From Home
Working from home can be an excellent way to avoid the daily commute and to work in a way that’s more natural to you. It can enable you to have a relaxed work day that can also be even more productive than working at the office. But it can take a little bit of getting used to before you build up a routine and settle into habits that increase your productivity.

Working from home can be an excellent way to avoid the daily commute and to work in a way that’s more natural to you. It can enable you to have a relaxed work day that can also be even more productive than working at the office. But it can take a little bit of getting used to before you build up a routine and settle into habits that increase your productivity.

Read on for tips to get you up and running quickly:

Create A Good
Working Environment

If you have to keep shifting the ironing and the bills, and a whole host of other things before you can set up your computer and get working, it’ll get old really fast. One of the first and most important things you can do when working from home is to get your environment right.

If you can set up a home office in a spare room and arrange everything so that the things you need are immediately to hand, then that really is the best arrangement. You won’t have to tidy your space every time you want to do something, and all of the items you regularly use will be easily available.

If you can create your own space, you can decorate it to suit you and arrange the furniture in a way that makes you feel motivated, happy, and ready to work. It’s also handy to be able to shut the door so you can concentrate. Office desks and chairs are an important part of working from home and should be one of the first considerations when setting up your home workspace. You need to be comfortable and seated in a way that won’t hurt your body over time. Buy the best ergonomic chair and office desk you can find.

Get Organised

If you’re working from home part-time and working at your employer’s office the rest of the time, you’ll need to be organised and to plan what you *have* to do in the office and what can be done at home. Try arranging meetings and doing any collaborative work that means you need to be there on the days you’re in the office, so you can make the most of your days at home.

Your IT department will likely set your computer up with VPN and all the tools and apps you need to work from home, but don’t be shy about making suggestions if you know you’ll get more done.

If you work for yourself, on the other hand, it’s a case of working out the best solutions for you in terms of software, apps, and other items you’ll need to make working from home easy.

Either way, if you have everything set up in advance before you start, you won’t be waiting around while software loads and items get delivered.

Think About When And How You Work Best

Some of us are naturally night owls and some of us are morning people, and if you have the flexibility in your schedule, you’ll get more done if you schedule work to suit your body’s natural rhythm. If you know you have a low energy period in the afternoon, then schedule in things that don’t need a whole lot of brain power and effort, like filing or checking emails.

The other thing to consider is whether you work best in silence, with the TV in the background, or with Def Leppard turned up to 11! You might have to experiment a bit at first but you’ll figure out what works best for you.

A study published by the Journal of Consumer Research concluded that while loud background noise can cause a distraction, low levels of ambient or white type noise can help with concentration and productivity.

There are also a number of background noise apps available for both desktops and mobile devices that have been designed to provide the right levels of sound to aid with concentration.

Get Your Family And Friends On Board

You’ll never get anything done if your family and friends keep interrupting you and assuming you aren’t working just because you’re at home. “Can you just…” and “You’re not doing anything, are you?” will become the bane of your life if you don’t educate the people close to you and set firm boundaries on when you can be interrupted and when you can’t.

While it’s tempting to just pop a load of washing in or do the shopping for your partner or play with the kids for an hour or two, if you keep doing that, you’ll never finish anything, and you’ll have a hard time focusing on more complicated work.

Defining work times and space, such as a home office, not only help you to focus, but help others to know that you’re working and shouldn’t be disturbed.

Plan Your Day

There are tons of time tracking apps and productivity methods out there, so again it comes down to trying a few things and seeing what works for you.

Try the Pomodoro method where you split your time into 25-minute sessions with a break in between, or split your day into 4 lots of 90 minute sessions (the most time we can focus deeply is between 90 and 120 minutes before we need a break).

Work out what needs doing and when, whether that’s just by adding tasks on Google Calendar or by using a more sophisticated time management system or planner.

It might take a little while, but regularly reflecting on your style of working will enable you you will develop your own routine that suits you, enuring you stay productive when you need to be.

Exercise And Take
Proper Breaks

Sitting for long periods really isn’t good for your body and can have some serious effects over time. In addition, we all need regular breaks because a bit of time away from our desk can make us feel refreshed and ready to get started again, preventing a feeling of being overwhelmed.

So take a walk, get some fresh air, run on the spot or visit the gym for a quick half hour – whatever fits into your day that will make you feel good and give you a break.

Change It Up

If you usually work at home, why not try having one or two days a week in a coffee shop?

It’ll give you a different atmosphere and working space, and just having a change can make you more productive.

Turn Off Social Media And Email Notifications

If your phone’s always pinging with notifications and your email keeps popping up with new items, it’s a huge distraction, and that’s before we get to the cute cat videos on YouTube.

Turn the sound off on your phone and try a distraction blocker that will limit which apps or services can fight for your attention at certain times of the day. Yes, social media is fun, and it can give your brain a break. But for many people it can be too easy to go down the rabbit hole and find they’ve lost a few hours. So cut the distractions and you’ll get a lot more done.

Get Dressed

One of the best things about working from home is that you totally can work in your nighty or your pyjamas and no-one will ever know.

But you’ll feel more fresh, professional and ready to work if you do get dressed, even if it’s not the full suited and booted look you’d usually have in the office.

There’s no saying you can’t still have the odd day in your PJs, but you’ll feel more like you’re at work if you at least dress for what you’re doing.

Helping their mind to be in ‘work mode’ by wearing what they have decided are their ‘work clothes’ helps many people to focus on the tasks at hand.

Plan For Tomorrow

Before you finish for the day, pick three main things you want to get done for tomorrow and work out when you’ll fit them in according to the best way you work at each time of day.

That way, when you start again in the morning, you’re not wasting precious time wondering what to do first.

Your tasks and priorities have already been defined, making it a little bit easier to jump right in and get started.

Switch Off

When you work from home, it can be tempting to just keep going even after your usual finish time. But you need a life away from work, so plan in when you’ll end your day and stick to it, or you might feel like you never get away from work.

Change your clothes, close the door on your office, and consciously choose to be finished for the day.

You’ll feel much fresher and more motivated the following day if you have a proper break.

Hopefully, with our tips on working from home, you’ll be able to get up and running right out of the gate. With a personalised plan and working environment that suits you, and plenty of ways to avoid distractions, you can be more productive than ever. All while reaping the benefits of working from home and still having time to enjoy life apart from work.

Shop Office Furniture
4th September 2018

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