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How to Stay Focused When Working from Home
Posted April 24, 2020
Working from home has many perks — zero commute, a comfortable environment, and no dress code. Yet, working from home comes with its own set of distractions. Since you don’t have your boss looking over your shoulder, it’s easy to slack off. Plus, chores around the house will call your name. And if you have furry family members, they will do their best to get your attention. Stay productive working from home with the following tips.
Create a Real Workstation
Since you may only need a laptop and your cell phone to get your work done, you might not bother creating a real workstation in your home. Working on your couch or from your bed will be comfortable, but those locations will not put you in the proper work mindset. Contributors at Entrepreneur.com recommend you create a home office, complete with a desk, door, and business-quality materials.
However, if you relish working from home because you don’t enjoy a traditional work space, you can still be productive. “Remove distractions, create a layout that supports efficient workflows, and cultivate an environment that keeps you in the zone,” McGerr writes.
Dress the Part
Your work from home dress code doesn’t require the corporate-approved threads your office does, but it’s still important to dress for the day. Pajamas, sweats, and yoga pants are very comfortable, but they’re clothes designed for lounging, the very opposite intent of a productive worker.
“Get dressed every day. It doesn’t have to be what other people think you should wear. Are you productive in jeans and a button up shirt? Wear that. Just get out of the clothes you slept in. Let your brain know that you’re ready to work,” advises Medium.com writer Nicole Peery.
Manage your Time
Working remotely tends to offer flexibility with your hours. You can start working the moment you wake up, but if you’re not careful, you might find yourself working much later than you want to or should. An office setting typically comes with a set schedule of hours. You clock in, work, take a lunch, work, take a break, work, and then clock out. Your work from home schedule should resemble a typical working day, with breaks, dedicated work time, and a hard stop.
Your friends and family might interpret your working from home as a day off, so it’s important you set boundaries. McGerr advises telling your family and friends the hours you’ll be working so they won’t distract you. “Setting these boundaries will give you time to work uninterrupted so you don’t end up putting in extra hours over the weekend to catch up,” according to McGerr.
Ignore Social Media
Engaging on social media is a fast way to get nothing done during working hours. Don’t let social media notifications, messages or emails that are not related to work hog your attention. To keep focused on your work to-do list, Peery recommends using the do not disturb feature on your phone.
Working from home offers a lot of freedom and flexibility. These tips will help keep you productive.