If you are not familiar with working from home, you may find it more difficult than you think. Working in an office we are forced to follow schedules-start and end times, mandatory meetings, colleagues, and managers pay attention to what we are doing. When we are working from home it is a completely different environment, you may find productivity drops. Here are 10 simple tips to help limit distractions and keep motivated while working from home:
1 tip – Make a routine and stick to it: When working at home, it is more important to maintain a regular routine such as getting up, working, relaxing, exercising, and sleeping. Determine your working hours and don’t change them, try to work every day the same hours, this way it will be easier to stick to a routine. These may be different from what you do in the office-depending on your employer's expectations and your other commitments. This is important to improve work efficiency, not only for you also for the people around you or living with you, because they will know when to let you work alone.
2 tip – Pretend you are going to work: Our psychological connection with work and the workplace can increase productivity. Try to not lose this feeling working remotely. Do all the preparations and the same routine you would do as if you would be entering the office. This includes setting the alarm clock, showering, dress up, eating breakfast, buying coffee, preparing/buying lunch as usual and for women even doing your makeup. This will trick your psychology.
3 tip – Determine a dedicated workspace: It is not necessary to have a office, but it should be an area where when you sit down you are mentally prepared to work to your fullest. All the things you need to work keep in this area, ideally a place separate from where you relax or sleep, if not distractions will come easily.
4 tip – Turn off email (from time to time): It is crucial to maintain in close contact with colleagues, especially in teams working across different locations, or when dealing with complex projects. Nevertheless, sometimes it can be helpful to close the email for some time and work on the task at hand without any type of interruption. Dealing with emails constantly can be stressful and time consuming, so set a specific time to check it. Make sure your manager or colleagues understand your plan and so they know how to contact you in case of emergency.
5 tip – Turn off notifications: This is a useful method for keeping away from innovation interruptions. If you are constantly receiving notifications from your email, message, or social media this interrupts your concentration and it will take your time to refocus. Beside the fact that you will constantly have on your mind the notifications you have received. This will significantly affect your overall productivity of the day.
6 tip – Put your phone away: If it's significant they'll leave a message. Our phones have revolutionised how we do numerous things, but they are also one of the most distracting devices! Try to put your phone in a different room this, will keep it out of your site. You can also turn on airplane mode or do not disturb, but this will keep the phone in your site meaning it will stay constantly in your mind.
7 tip – Focus: Try not to do everything at the same time, take a task one by one. When you feel that you are at the peak of your energy level, take advantage of this and get the “hard” work done. Start your day by writing a to-do list so you know where you’re focus has to be for the day. A great method is also planning your week ahead on a Sunday night, this will ensure that you will get your work done in time.
8 tip – Set time limits: This is a great efficiency hack for topics or tasks you usually want to skip and procrastinate about. Break it down, set your time limit to finish the task and just get it done! Put a time on with 30-minute intervals. Once you start working, focus and take a 1-minute break to re-focus.
9 tip – Use video conferencing: When working from home it can be hard to sustain cohesion and collaborate with colleagues. Therefore, scheduling video meetings as often you would face-to-face meetings. Make sure you attend every call and respond to messages. If you are the manager, it is crucial to communicate well and check regularly if any members of your team need help or advice. For many teams it can be useful to schedule a call every morning before everyone starts working to catch up and create plans. This creates a great sense of purpose and sense of direction.
10 tip – Don’t go crazy: As you are spending most of your days inside your home, it is very important you make time to go outdoors for walks and do sports. Keeping your mental health sane is one of the most important factors, if not you will not have the motivation to work. Catch up with friends and family, even it is via text or face time. For some teams it may help to get on a video call on a Friday night and all have a drink together. This will also create a bond between the group and a more friendly atmosphere. It can feel strange but make it fun. Take care of yourself, it Is important to prevent burnouts and improve your job performance.