As the modern workforce becomes increasingly connected through the internet, employers are beginning to see the benefits of allowing employees to work from home. For certain industries, working remotely has proven to increase productivity, while employers are also free to search for prospective employees anywhere, dramatically increasing the pool of candidates.
Working from home comes with certain challenges, especially for employees accustomed to working in an office environment. Read on to discover a few helpful tips for working from home, including ideas on how you can stay productive and comfortable so you can thrive at your job.
Working From Home? Use These 5 Tips to Stay Comfortable and Productive
1. Pin Down Your Work Habits
This first tip is part of an ongoing process, but it’s an important first step if you’re going to be working from home. After all, if you were previously used to working in an office–or, for recent graduates, going to class–you may have been on a stricter schedule that provided specific times for breaks, lunch, deadlines, etc. If you’re working from home, you may be setting your own schedule, and that means you need to learn to pay attention to how you manage your time.
Give yourself a few minutes before you start your day to make sure you have everything you’ll need, from a notepad and pens to a pair of headphones and a cup of coffee. Set specific times for breaks, including a lunch break, during which you should take the time to stretch your legs and get some fresh air.
2. Create a Schedule
Create a schedule for yourself to stick to. Set an alarm and wake up at the same time every day. Eat a healthy breakfast and go about your morning routine as if you were heading into the office. If possible, set up in an office or bedroom where you can close the door and concentrate; friends, roommates, and pets coming and going as they please are a huge source of distraction.
Keep a daily planner, especially if your tasks are different every day. Before the end of each workday, take a few minutes to write down a few tasks that you know you want to accomplish the next day. That way, when you sit down to start your work the next day, you’ll have a few tasks to check off right away, creating momentum that will propel you through the rest of your day.
3. Be Comfortable, But Not Too Comfortable
There’s no reason why you shouldn’t be comfortable, especially if you’re working from home. But one of the most common mistakes made by at-home employees who ultimately find themselves lacking in productivity is that they attempt to work in their pajamas from their beds.
If you’re going to work from home, you should treat it as if you were heading into the office–though you can probably get away with a slightly more casual outfit. Get up, get dressed, put on shoes, and sit upright at a desk or table. Studies have shown that this has a psychological effect for many people, putting them in a productive state of mind that helps to increase focus and improve results.
4. Get Rid of Those Distractions
On the one hand, simply turning off your internet or putting your phone into Airplane Mode can work, but most people who work from home do need the internet.
Your smartphone can be a huge source of distraction, especially if you don’t have a supervisor hanging out over your shoulder. If you need to leave your smartphone on, turn it upside down on your desk and turn off all push notifications. Use apps specifically designed to block social media during set hours. Don’t let your phone be your downfall!
5. Remember to Eat Lunch
We’ve all gotten a little “hangry” at the office before, but it’s also important to avoid when working from home. Forgetting to eat can cause you to lose motivation, get tired, and even become combative when you don’t need to be. Just remember to give yourself half an hour to an hour of lunch time. Also, keep some almonds, apples, and other healthy snacks on hand in case you need a little energy before or after your designated lunch break; avoid sweet and salty junk food snacks, as those will only make you tired and dehydrated.
Working from home is one of the great advantages of participating in the modern workforce, but you need to treat the job seriously if you want to be successful. Follow these tips, stay focused and energized, and you’ll have everything you need to be a model remote employee!
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- Working From Home? Use These 5 Tips to Stay Comfortable and Productive - February 16, 2018