With the current situation in the world right now, many people are transitioning to home working and finding their new ‘normals’. If you’re not someone who is used to working from home and are perhaps struggling to stay focused and avoid distractions, then take a look at these simple tips to help increase work from home productivity.
Tip #1 Don’t check your phone until you’re out of bed
Picking up your phone as soon as you’ve woken up without even getting out of bed can immediately distract you and cause you to lose focus before the day has even begun. One of my habits is to have a plan of action for the following morning, before I go to sleep every night. When I wake up I know exactly what I’m going to do the minute I get out of bed which helps me to optimise my time each morning and stay productive. Each new day is a new start, so make sure you start your day the right way and avoid the temptation of checking your phone!
Tip #2 Know your journey to work
Now that you’re not commuting, you might find that your morning routine has gone out the window for the forseeable. To help keep some structure to your day, it’s important that you adjust to a new morning routine that you commit to each morning with intention.
My morning routine includes drinking lots of water and making a coffee or green tea, checking my email, taking some time for personal development, followed by a series of tasks that I’ve scheduled in, depending on the day.
Whether you’d like to work out, walk your dog or make a coffee, make sure you schedule in time to do those things before you sit down at your desk ready for your working day.
Tip #3 Set up your office space for success
If you don’t put the effort in to make your office space presentable, how can you expect to work productively. Whether you have a secluded office in your home or just a dedicated area from which to work from, make sure it’s set up so that you can work comfortably. Make sure that your working area is set up to make you feel motivated and inspired.
Tip #4 Keep on top of your schedule
Have a schedule and stick to it. Whether you use a digital calendar, have a to-do list or utilise a project management tool (or a combination!) make sure that you have a work schedule to help keep you focused and on track. And by ticking off tasks throughout the day, you’ll also feel motivated to keep going.
Tip #5 Get dressed
Ok so this may sound simple, but if you’re someone who’s used to having a shower each morning, painting on your face and putting on a pair of high heels, you may not be feeling quite yourself if you’re now sat working in your pajamas with the kids running around the house and a head full of dry shampoo.
Albeit tempting to use the time you’d usually spend commuting to sleep in, sometimes getting up and getting dressed up really can help to keep you motivated, as how we feel about ourselves can often determine our actions for the day.
Get up, get dressed, establish your morning routine and make sure you feel great before you start work. If it helps, wear heels in the house!
Tip #6 Stay active
If you’re someone who usually spends the most of their working day on their feet – or even if you have a desk job – you’ll probably be finding that you’re less active during this time of lockdown. As you’re not walking to work/the car/the bus stop etc, it’s likely that you aren’t moving as much as you mornally would be. It’s so important to stay active, not just for our physical health but also our mental health too, and keeping active will play a part in how motivated you are feeling.
Ways to keep active during your working day at home include; scheduling in a morning workout, standing up regularly throughout the day, taking breaks to walk around the house or up and down the stairs, and going for a brisk walk on your lunch break, even if it’s just around the garden!
Tip #7 Meal prep
Yes it might be tempting to graze at your desk throughout the day, especially when you now have unlimited access to your kitchen cupboards, it really does help to prepare your meals and keep healthy lunches in the fridge that you can easily have during your working day at home.
By preparing healhty foods at home, you will fuel your body and mind, maintain the energy levels needed for your day and avoid the tempation of raiding the snack cupboard or ordering too much Deliveroo.
Tip #8 Schedule time for social media/email/TV
To help stay focused whilst working from home, you can try to avoid checking your phone or having Facebook open on your desktop browser whilst your working. However tempting it might be, schedule in short breaks throughout the day to allow yourself time for these things, but don’t pick up your phone constantly when you should be working as this can affect your productivity. Don’t have the TV on in the background, and don;t be distracted by those enticing marketing emails popping up either. Put your phone aside, close down your email, and switch off the TV or any other distractions.
I hope these tips help you if you’re new to homeworking! And remember that no matter how many tips you read, the action needs to come from you. So be disciplined and make sure that you are putting in place habits that will help with work from home productivity.