4 survival tips for working from home
Do you have a New Year’s resolution to work from home more this year – maybe to spend more time with your children or save some petrol money?
Working from home is a dream situation especially if you are just starting your business and you want to avoid traffic mayhem. But working from home isn’t without its challenges. Here are a few tips to avoid eight hours of cabin fever and daytime television.
1.Create a designated ‘workspace’
This is the fun part and a great way to get you motivated, especially if you’re just starting to work from home. Taking your laptop to your sofa whilst you watch the news isn’t a great way to start the day.
If you have a spare room for a home office, this is the best option, but of course not everyone does. If you’re working with a smaller space, a desk or table will suffice. Whatever you have to work with, ensure that it is clearly a work area.
Keep it clean, distraction-free and comfortable. It needs to act as an area you’ll want to sit in all day and will help you stay focused.
2. Invest in proper tech
When you work from home, a good internet connection is essential. Whether you are conference calling, uploading reports to the cloud or just replying to emails, if your internet goes down so does your ability to get the work done. So try researching internet suppliers in your area, read reviews and consider upgrading to ensure that you get the best possible service.
Working from home also means you get to choose the background noise to your working day. Whether it’s the radio or your favourite playlist. But it’s still a good idea to invest in a good pair of headphones to attach to your phone for calls.
That makes whatever distractions may be going in the background – the radio, washing machine, a busy pet or traffic noise less noticeable to the people with whom you’re speaking.
3. Get dressed
Ever started your work day by opening your laptop whilst still under the duvet? Snuggling in your onesie isn’t going to equate to a very productive morning. You’ll feel more lethargic and be more prone to distractions. The reason behind office wear is that what you wear can often impact how you feel, much like a costume or uniform. Therefore, dress for productivity if that is what you intend on being. We’re not suggesting you sit in your home office in a three-piece suit, but lost the pyjamas.
4. At work, means at work
Working from an office or your home office, the same rules apply. Try not to schedule appointments in the middle of the afternoon if they can be avoided. They will most likely take longer than you expect and you will find it more difficult to pick up where you left off.
Try the same rule for checking personal emails, social networks and other tasks – designate them to your ‘breaks’ and this includes housework.
It can be tempting to get distracted by housework when you work from home. Reloading the washing machine, ironing that outfit you’re going to need for this evening, just nipping round with the vacuum. However, if you plan on getting as much done from home as you would in the office, then this is a no.
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