Ever since COVID-19 hit, the concept of working from home has become familiar with nearly every business. It hasn’t been a smooth transition for everyone though, with office spaces being replaced by the distracting comfort of their own homes. Whether it’s Netflix or the kids, there’s a lot that can get in the way of focused productivity. Thankfully, there are some tips for working from home that I follow every day, helping me fly through the hours, working hard.
How To Increase Productivity When Working From Home:
Designated Work Space
The first of our tips for working from home is – create a “Home office.” We don’t all have a spare room, but even having a desk in the corner of your living room can separate your home from your work. If you work from the sofa, your mind is in constant relaxation mode. Separate the two.
Reducing clutter in your workspace is essential to concentration. Studies show that a clear desk brings clear headspace. Make use of remote working tools, like wireless keyboards, numerical keyboards and a USB charger hub to charge multiple devices.
Read our ‘Home Office Organization Tips and Ideas’ guide here.
Find a Schedule and Routine
Working from home brings freedom. Sometimes, too much. Just like working at the office, give yourself a schedule to stick to and you’ll stay on track. Consider using your phone’s alarms throughout the day, so you don’t forget. Here are my scheduling tips:
I always set the alarm, so I don’t oversleep (very easy to do when working from home). Then I give myself 1 hour to prepare for the day and relax. Get dressed. Pajamas are comfy, but they’re for a sleepy mindset. A productive mind needs real clothes.
Email and Meeting Time
Designate time to reply to all your emails. Depending on your work, it might be best to do it all in the morning or the evening or both. The goal is to make sure you’re not continually getting distracted by emails.
Everyone needs a break. Evidence suggests small breaks actually boost productivity. Consider having a short break every 2 hours. Set an alarm, so you don’t over-do it. Stick to it.
Set a time for lunch. You won’t ruin your own body clock’s schedule or lose time. If you can, prepare your meals the night before to save time. If you have the time, go for a short walk during your lunch break to refresh yourself.
End of Your Day
Once I designated time to stop the day, I cut down many of my distractions. If I know I’m allowed to play video games after 7 pm, then I have no reason to touch them any earlier. Set a time and respect it.
Create To-Do Lists
I’d get nothing done without these. With a clear plan of action, you can push through your tasks without wasting time. Place some sticky notes next to your screen, mapping out your day. Alternatively, use a spreadsheet where you can store tonnes of information and share it with other co-workers.
Staying on top of your tasks is vital. If you’re flooded in tasks, then your stress levels go up and productivity decreases.
Mute Your Apps
WhatsApp, Facebook and Instagram are your enemies when working from home. It’s very easy to get sucked into a conversation with a friend that lasts for 30 minutes. Mute your phone and the next time you check it, hopefully, an hour or more has passed.
Prevent Browser Distractions
Embarrassingly, I know that sometimes I open a new tab and hit Twitter without realizing it. If like me, you don’t have enough self-control to prevent this, then use a website blocker. You can use these plug-ins to ban yourself from entering selected sites while working and then you can turn it off later when you’re done.
Stay away from the news too. It’s important to stay informed, but you don’t need to know everything when you need to finish an important project by the end of the day!
Tell Your Family When It’s Work Time
During COVID, many parents were forced to work home with their kids. That’s a blessing and a curse. Obviously, you can’t completely shut the door on your kids’ needs, but you can let them know it’s time to work. Head to a separate room and tell them that you need focus time for the next couple of hours. If possible, head out to a local cafe or library where you can escape.
Listen to Focusing Music
I use ambient music or video game soundtracks to shut-out outside noises and focus my brain. Most of these soundtracks have been designed specifically to help video game players focus, which works just as well when you’re remote working. They also add some enjoyment when working gets tiring.
One of the best things and best tips for working from home is sleep. Without the need to commute to the office, you can get your full 8 hours. Don’t waste this bonus. A well-rested mind will help you focus more and you’ll generally feel better.
VOAMOKO: Improve Your Productivity
As passionate tech innovators, we produce products with productivity at their core. From wireless keyboards to USB hubs, we help people working from home across the world reduce clutter and improve focus. Anytime. Anywhere.