Thankfully I have a career where I can work from home but, I have to admit that between my job (which is part time) and blogging, getting and staying focused can be challenging.
Over the years I have developed a list of habits that have really helped me master the art of being productive in a small amount of time.
Throw in a couple of kids, and you get pretty good at maximizing your efficiency in a short period of time.
Here are 6 simple ways that I have learned to be more productive when working from home!
Get Ready for the Day
Rather than just jumping out of bed and logging into my computer and starting work in my pajamas, I wake up extra early to get dressed as if I am going to a job out of the home.
I shower, do my hair and makeup, and throw on an outfit (and by “outfit”, I mean something other than yoga pants or pajamas).
Getting ready helps me sync up with the task ahead. While I shower and get ready, I am organizing my tasks in my head and preparing myself mentally for the work ahead of me.
Being dressed for the day also helps me have extra time to work, rather than having to carve out time later in the day to get dressed if I need to go somewhere.
Create A Routine
After getting dressed, I make myself coffee and something for breakfast which I take with me to my work space. This has been my routine ever since I began working from home.
While I eat my breakfast and sip my coffee, I go through my e-mails and do a task list. Once my breakfast is finished, I dig into the workload.
Creating a routine helps you get into a productive mindset. It gives you a few moments to switch gears from everything else that is going on and focus on your work.
Comfortable Work Space
I have a dedicated work space which is my home office and I use that space 95% of the time. However, some days I like to switch it up and I will work outside, at a coffee shop, or even from my bedroom.
Whatever space I choose to work in, I always make sure I have all of the tools I need to do my job. If your work space isn’t comfortable and practical, you won’t get much done.
I always have a babysitter with the kids when I work from home for my job. I also make sure that the kids don’t come in and out of my work space to distract me. I don’t leave a television on and I usually silence my phone and turn off any social media.
A few minutes to check my Facebook or Instagram not only take away from my time, but you will be surprised how hard it can be to get focused again.
Being distracted, even if only for a few moments, really effect your productivity so be sure to minimize distractions as much as possible.
When I work on my blog, I usually don’t have a sitter so I always work when the kids are napping and when they go down for the night. If I minimize distractions, I can get so much done in a short period of time.
In my opinion, this is the most important habit when working from home. Do not procrastinate, ever.
I hate procrastinating. It makes me anxious when I am behind on projects or maintaining our household.
As a rule of thumb, I don’t procrastinate much.
I wasn’t always like this, I used to procrastinate more in college but a few almost failed tests helped me learn quickly that wasting time just isn’t worth it for my success and also for my stress.
Becoming a mom also made me realize that procrastinating just isn’t an option anymore.
If I skip the dishes or laundry for only one day, things get out of hand quickly and it is much harder to catch up rather than just maintain.
When it comes to working from home, making sure to stay on top of deadlines and projects is key. If you don’t, it spills over into the time you are supposed to have for everything else in your life and pretty soon, you are not only behind at work, but also at home.
Keep A Schedule
Between motherhood, working and trying to keep up with blogging, I have to keep a detailed schedule of my days.
Doctor appointments for the kids, work meetings, conference calls, etc all need to be on some sort of schedule or else things will be missed.
I keep everything I need to do in my google calendar which sends alerts and reminders to my e-mail as well as to my phone.
I also check my google calendar at the end of each day for the next two days to make sure I know what is coming up.
If you don’t like keeping things electronically, put them on a calendar board in your office or a daily planner. Whatever your method for staying organized is, just figure it out and stick with it.
There is nothing more distracting than missing a deadline, an appointment or something you had planned.
Now here’s to a more productive new week!