In a tech-savvy world, the number of possibilities presented is endless. Thanks to technology, work does not have to be done at a particular place or at a particular time. Some people work remotely, others do online work and they can simply work from the comfort of their homes.
Working from home is ideal in moments of crisis when flexibility is critical. In some cases, such as freelancing, you can work for people continents away. With such endless possibilities, comes the need to do things differently as there is a new set of challenges provided by the lack of a boss who wants to see you seated at your desk. You make the rules and live by them.
An office is great because it gives you a structured environment, which allows you to work almost uninterrupted and you are almost always assured of maximum productivity. However, if your job allows you to work from home, or if you are a freelancer who does not have an office, a strict self-discipline is the only way to stay productive. There is the great temptation to maybe watch a movie, snooze a little after lunch, or just laze in the house. So, here are some tips that can help you stay disciplined and productive, even when watching an episode of Game of Thrones would seem very ideal.
Get out of bed
Of course, if you live in a bedsitter, your bed might be the chair and bed and only furniture you have. Most startups have been started on beds, where people simply wake up, pull their laptops and start working.
Although this sounds really romantic, it is a bad idea when you are trying to be productive. Once you feel a bit tired and lazy, lying down for two minutes is simply very easy and can turn into hours and before you know it, you will not have accomplished anything by the end of the day.
If you are to work from home, get out of bed, have a cup of tea and sit away from your bed, whether you live in a bedsitter or in a bigger house. Better still, have a dedicated working area, such as a chair and a desk, if this is possible. This will ensure that laziness is kept at bay.
Have a schedule
Self-discipline starts with having a plan and sticking to it. Having planned schedule ensures that you stay disciplined and motivated. For example, knowing your deadlines could easily help you plan your day well, such that you are able to create time to attend to your work on time.If you find it hard to have a written schedule and sticking to it, you can use apps to help you plan your day and work efficiently. A schedule will help you avoid the temptation to play another round of GTA V when you should be trying to meet a deadline.
Take a shower in the morning and dress up
Working from home is very comfortable because you can choose when to wake up and even whether the shower would be nice immediately you wake up, or later. Well, showering is a great way to wake up and get into the right frame of mind. Most people simply wake up, sit up on their beds, switch on their computers then start working. If you do this, chances are, you will feel lazy and it will take you much longer to actually wake up.
Another great tip is to actually dress up a little bit. Of course, suiting up is a bit impractical but, at the very least, get out of your pajamas.
Attend to household chores and run your errands
One distraction that routinely comes with working from home is the urge to clean up and go run your other errands. It is easy to simply stop working on projects and start doing other things, especially if you are feeling lazy or tired.
Since you are not being watched by anyone, keeping the self-discipline that requires being diligent with your time can be tricky. To avoid such distractions, create time to attend to household duties and other errands.
Set goals and take some time off
In order to stay disciplined, set daily goals and stay focused. This way, you will avoid distractions and the temptation to procrastinate. Distractions are the biggest enemy of people who work from home. Therefore, setting daily goals and deliberately working towards them leads to more productivity.
On the other hand, it is very easy to work continuously without taking breaks since there are no meetings and other activities that require you to get away from your computer. When setting goals, set aside time for short breaks in order to re-energise.
Set working hours
While working from home, working hours can be vague. You can easily mix your personal life and work life, which means that there will be no time for maximum productivity or relaxation. Just like people who work in offices, it is important to compartmentalise your life and your work so as to avoid burnout.
Get Support When Children are Involved
Working from home can be a challenge when you are a parent or guardian with children in the house. They are not used to having their parent at home and might want to play, seek attention or even become clingy. Make it clear to those who can understand that you are still at work and engage them during your breaks to keep the balance. The nanny can also be very instrumental at this point in keeping the children busy and occupied.
Stay motivated despite the environment
Working from home is quickly becoming common. As such, there is need to develop a new set of skills which involve self-discipline so as to ensure that you remain productive. These tips will come in handy for anyone trying to find the right balance when working from home.