I have worked from home for many years now. It used to be with fewer interruptions as my family is also home much more now – but overall, I have figured out this working from home thing pretty well for myself. Many of my clients are struggling with this topic, so I thought I would share a few tips to keep you highly productive.
No matter whether you are working your office job from home or if you want to stay productive and on task with projects – here are a few common obstacles that frequently sabotage success – and ideas on how to solve them:
- Interruptions by family members/roommates driving you crazy?
Define work times and ideally also a specific workspace. Rules are clear: I am working. This is my priority. Don’t bother me. It’s okay to be clear and forthright about this.
- Self-sabotage and distraction:
Doing the laundry, cleaning out the dishwasher – is that part of your tasks you really need to do right now – or are you avoiding a work project that doesn’t draw you in too much right now? Plan when you are doing what and stick to that plan! You can easily do the other tasks when you’re taking a break from your office work in order to mix things up for your body and mind.
- Feeling unproductive and wasting time:
a) 80/20: This one requires some work and diving deep into your project and task lists – 20 % of the things we all focus on are really the ones driving our business, our progress, our success forward. Identify those and focus on those first.
b) Prioritize: With that understanding – prioritize what you will focus on and make a BIG 3 list every morning. Those are the 3 things you will move or get done today, everything else comes after. Checking off those 3 things at night feels awesome.
c) Batching: this one helps me tons with tasks that are more administrative and feel like distractions from the real game changing tasks. Batch those into set time blocks and get them done. It is proven that you spend less time overall if you do similar tasks all together versus going in and out of focus.
d) Block Scheduling. This goes hand in hand with the planning – block your schedule for focused work for 45 minutes (usually the most productive blocks are between 30 and 60 minutes – 40ish minutes seem to be working best for many!), set an alarm and do NOTHING else than focus on the task you scheduled for that time. No bathroom break, no fridge wandering, no chatting with your partner. WORK. When the alarm goes off, take a break, move around, get some water, do some stretches, get some fresh air if you can. Get back at it after 10-15 minutes. I promise, if you stick to this for about 4-6 times a day, you get waaaaayyy more done than at any given day in the office.
- Move. Nourish. Renew.: Feel like you are falling off the wagon with your holistic healthy living practices?
That is a whole other topic – but here is a short one about this: Include those into your schedule and plan and get it done. Move in between work blocks to get the oxygen flowing. Get outside to stay sharp and fresh. Connect with yourself and journal and plan with intention. Schedule lunch and snack breaks and have healthy stuff prepared. Kitchen and Snack Drawers are off limits during work times.
- Be kind to yourself.
This is not easy. And we all get frustrated and overwhelmed. Identify what works for you and what does not and look for ways to make it work best for you, your family and your home. Focus on the positive.
It is something most are still getting used to, so explore the tips, keep an open mind and see what makes sense and works for you personally – and let me know!
I hope this supports,
P.S: To dive deeper into the topics and learn more on how to upgrade your habits at home and feel better – download my e-book here.