There are mixed feelings regarding working from home, while some might consider it to be the new normal, some can’t wait to return to the office. Irrespective of which side you picked, losing productivity is a common problem we all suffer with. More often than not, we get easily sidetracked with things and lose focus. In an office setting, with a work-focused environment, it’s relatively easy to finish up tasks to get back to your home. But what if you are already working from home?
Keeping yourself motivated and finding the right balance between your personal or professional life might be difficult. It is easily one of the common challenges we face with remote work, and without effectively managing the problem, we’re either focused on one side more than the other. But luckily, certain hacks have reportedly increased productivity in other professionals, and it’s about time we try them!
1. Get Ready for Work Like You Would For on-site
One of the common reasons why we aren’t as productive at times when working from home is because we aren’t ready for it. On a normal day, you would wake up, freshen up, dress up and then have breakfast before leaving for the office. With work from home, you need to adopt the same attitude to be more productive. This doesn’t mean putting on your finest suit, but everything else is just as important.
2. Create a Workspace that Encourages Productivity
When the work from home arrangement was new, every one dedicated proper workspaces for office work. But as we grew more familiar with the routine, our office spaces shifted to our sofas in front of the TV or on our beds. This is why having a dedicated workplace, and refreshing its setting now and then is extremely important to be productive. Keep your spaces for leisure separate from where you work to get a better work-life balance.
3. Don’t Forget to Socialize
In a physical setting, it was relatively simple to communicate to your boss when you were unsure about certain things. Now, everything requires either a message or a meeting, and even being live all the time has its share of problems. The key isn’t to continuously communicate, but effectively communicate, and don’t only converse when you have to. Keep things simple, socialize, and update timely to be more productive.
4. Have a Personal Working Routine
It’s easy to be tempted by waking up only minutes before a meeting or working after hours to compensate for the lack of productivity during the day. The best thing you can do for yourself is to establish a routine, start when it’s time and finish when it’s time to get up. No wandering off, or snacking, or relaxing in between. If you don’t stick to a routine, you risk losing work time and leisure time alike.
5. Dedicated time for the Redundant Tasks
Have you ever gotten one email after the other and you invest in responding and getting that sorted before actually starting on what needs to be done? We’ve been there. Some unimportant and redundant tasks can quickly take most of your day. Set a time for redundant tasks, don’t let it interfere with your normal workflow, don’t get occupied with every new thing that comes your way. Prioritize what’s important, and do respond to the unimportant tasks as well.
6. Say “NO” with Confidence
Assuming you’ve tried all there is to be productive when working from home but things still aren’t getting done on time. Chances are you have more on your plate than you can deliver, or you can’t organize your output efficiently. Someone keeps on calling urgent meetings, and you keep on getting pulled into one thing or the other. Learn to say no, otherwise, you risk your projects faltering, and burning out.
7. Set Boundaries for Your Work Life
One of the most important hacks to staying productive is having a sense of motivation. What better way to stay motivated than by giving yourself some off time and treating yourself after you’re done working? Allocate specific hours for specific activities, working from home doesn’t mean you are continuously on the clock.
- Allocate hours to when you will be able to take casual calls.
- Delegate your tasks when possible.
- Maintain a task list, and don’t pile things on.
8. Boredom is the Enemy
Most people complain about working from home as it has blurred the boundary between professional and personal life. Along with making them work more hours, and constantly not finding peace in their homes because of it. The truth of the matter is, the line between work and personal life becomes blurred if you start mixing the two. Don’t work on your bed, don’t work late hours if you don’t have to, don’t associate places with office work.
Productivity is something that comes naturally if you have the right resources, mindset, and motivation. Find what works for you, and make it work to your advantage. But remember, what might do you more good might not always be the most relaxing option.