If you’re working from home, then you may have stumbled upon some challenges. From lack of motivation to frequent distractions, it can be hard to get everything done.
Here are 15 of the best tips for working from home to keep you happy, focused, and productive.
Table of Contents[Hide][Show]
- 1. Create a Work Schedule
- 2. Take “Me” Time
- 3. Stick to Routines
- 4. Time Block for Productivity
- 5. Task Batch for Productivity
- 6. Take Breaks
- 7. Get Out of the House
- 8. Have an Organized Office Space
- 9. Get Dressed for the Day
- 10. Plan and Prepare Meals
- 11. Keep Your Phone Away
- 12. Consider Your Technology
- 13. Get Enough Sleep
- 14. Move Your Body
- 15. Socialize
- Final thoughts working better from home
Top 15 Tips for Working From Home
When working from home, it’s important to set some boundaries and recognize it’s not just about getting up and starting work. These tips will hopefully help you have a better, more enjoyable work experience from your home.
1. Create a Work Schedule
The best advice you might ever hear about working from home is to treat it like your normal job.
Create your work schedule, if you aren’t clocking in and out as you would at an office, and stick to it. Working from home comes with a lot of flexibility, which can be good or bad.
If you’re someone who has a hard time getting going, then flexibility may mean getting started working at 11 a.m.
If you’re someone who loves what you do and have “workaholic” tendencies, then that may mean working well past normal hours. Set your work schedule and stick only to those hours to prevent burnout or procrastination.
2. Take “Me” Time
If you’re working long hours and not taking time for yourself, then you may find yourself feeling burnt out or stressed out. Make sure to carve out a little bit of “me” time to make sure your needs are met.
There are many different types of self-care activities that you can do to help with stress relief.
This may look like going for a walk, taking a nice bath, or simply giving yourself permission to enjoy your coffee in peace for fifteen minutes.
Choose leisure activities that best suit you.
3. Stick to Routines
As creatures of habit, humans typically thrive on routine. One of the ways that you can make sure you are being well cared for but also staying productive while working from home is by keeping a routine.
Have a morning routine, a “during the workday” routine, and an evening routine to separate your work and leisure hours.
Your morning routine may include the basics: brushing your teeth, getting dressed for the day, eating breakfast, enjoying your morning cup of coffee, and any other activities you may like to add.
To end your day and “clock out” from work, you might enjoy going for a walk, cooking dinner, or enjoying a show on Netflix to wind down.
4. Time Block for Productivity
Time blocking, combined with task batching, is one of the best tools you can use for productivity.
It’s easy to feel sluggish and not get anything done during the day while working at home. Schedule your calendar according to when you feel your best (if possible).
To time block, you would simply assign a certain time frame of hours (or minutes) into “blocks”. Here is an example of what this might look like for you:
- 6 – 8 AM: Morning Routine Block
- 8 AM – 12 PM: Work Block
- 12 – 1 PM: Lunch Break
- 1 – 5 PM: Work Block
- 5 – 8 PM: Evening Routine Block
In these blocks, you would try to fit your tasks into the time frame.
For example, during the morning and evening routine blocks, you would try to fit in your routines and anything else you might have on your “home” to-do list.
During your work blocks, you would try to check off anything in your “work” to-do list. Combine this with task batching (the next tip) for the best productivity.
5. Task Batch for Productivity
Task batching is as simple as it sounds: you combine like-tasks that you need to get done for the day to maximize productivity.
Why this works: our brains are divided into sections. Each section of the brain has a different purpose.
For example, the front portion of your brain is used for things like writing, while the small back portion is responsible for processing what you see.
When you do tasks that are similar, they’re using the same part of your brain to process information.
This helps with productivity because every time you switch tasks that aren’t similar, it takes time for you to re-focus on what you’re doing.
The less often you can do that, the better.
6. Take Breaks
Taking breaks goes along with treating it like it’s your normal job tip.
You wouldn’t expect anyone in the office to type on the computer for twelve hours straight without a break, would you? You shouldn’t expect it out of yourself either.
Schedule short 10–15-minute breaks for yourself to stand up and stretch, walk around, get a snack, and just have a few minutes of not looking at the computer.
A great way to get your breaks in is to set timers.
You can do this in whatever increment you would like: work 50 minutes and get a 10-minute break, work 55 minutes and get a 5-minute break, or whatever time schedule works best for you.
7. Get Out of the House
If you’re working from home, you’re likely going to get tired of being stuck indoors.
Make a point to try to get out of the house, even if it’s just to stand outside of your door for just a few minutes each day.
If you can, try to plan occasions to get out of the house such as grocery shopping.
Even just getting in the car and driving down the road for a short bit can give you a break from being inside of your home.
8. Have an Organized Office Space
Having a dedicated workspace is essential for separating your work and free time hours in the day.
The only thing is if you’re going into a messy office, it can be a little less inviting.
Try keeping your office space organized and clear of clutter so you don’t procrastinate going in there in the first place.
There’s also something about having a clean, clutter-free space that makes it easier to think.
9. Get Dressed for the Day
One of the best things about working from home is you have the freedom to work in your pajamas. This may not always be the best option, though.
Working from pajamas (for some people) can make them feel less than their best.
Even if you don’t change into your formal work attire, try getting dressed for the workday.
Make sure to wear something comfortable, though.
10. Plan and Prepare Meals
Part of making sure you’re taken care of means taking time to stop and eat for lunch.
One way to make meals during the workday easier is to plan and prepare ahead of time.
Try setting aside some time to plan your meals for the week and prepare what you can ahead of time so you don’t spend an hour or more a day cooking yourself three meals.
11. Keep Your Phone Away
Distractions are one of the biggest forms of procrastination. It’s easy once we get distracted to not go back to finishing the task we were working on.
With social media, emails, and text messages being so easily accessible, phones are usually a big cause of distractions.
Try keeping your phone silent, on airplane mode, or in another room so that you can focus while you’re working.
Only check your phone during your break.
12. Consider Your Technology
There’s nothing more frustrating than not having the right tools for the job.
If you’re working from home on a laptop that has Microsoft Office from 2007, then you may feel frustrated when it is slow and glitches while you’re working.
Look into (and talk to your boss if applicable) updating your technology.
Whether it is software or your computer and printer, you will find your work from home experience to be more pleasurable if you have the correct tools.
13. Get Enough Sleep
Has it been mentioned that taking care of yourself is important?
If you’re pulling all-nighters or staying up until 2 A.M. trying to finish your assignments, then you will likely wake up late. If you do wake up on time, then you will likely not feel your best.
Aim for a bare minimum of 6 hours of sleep to not feel like you need 5 cups of coffee to get you through your workday.
14. Move Your Body
Sitting at a desk or table all day will leave you sore from bad posture and lack of movement.
Try doing at-home workouts on YouTube, walking, yoga, or even just being mindful of your posture while you’re working.
If you have a smartwatch such as an Apple Watch or FitBit, they will also remind you to walk around so that you hit step goals throughout the day.
When you don’t leave the house often, it’s hard to get much socializing in. It’s important to make time to talk with friends and family.
Even if you aren’t able to get out of the house to socialize, try to make time to text, call, or video chat with your loved ones.
It doesn’t take too long to stay connected.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you adapt to work from home?
Adapting to working from home takes time and can be a challenge for some while others may find the transition very easy.
Whichever you are, adapting to working from home involves following many of the tips outlined in this article.
Things like setting your work schedule, using productivity blocks, and taking enough breaks should be remembered when you start working remotely.
Why can working from home be bad for employees?
There are many reasons why working from home can be bad for employees.
Lack of separation between work and personal life, less socialization, distractions from home, and isolation are some of the main reasons.
Are there any benefits to working from home?
There are many benefits to working from home including avoiding traffic, getting more work done, and cutting down on expenses.
These benefits might not seem like much but they can be very important to employees who live far away from their workplace or travel long commutes every day.
Is working from home more productive?
There is no definitive answer to this question. While some people may find that they are more productive when working from home, others may find that they are less productive and need more structure in their day.
A recent study of over 30,000 US-based employees showed an expected increase of 4.8% in productivity for home-based workers.
This of course doesn’t mean everyone is more productive, just that there is a higher likelihood of an increase in productivity as opposed to a decrease.
Final thoughts working better from home
Regardless of the tips given, your work at home experience needs to be personal.
Though other at-home workers’ routines may be inspiring, you have to do what works for you. Find a supportive community to stay connected to as you navigate your own work-from-home journey.
Remember that it is okay to make mistakes and missteps along the way. In the end, all of your hard work will be worth it when you find a routine that fits your lifestyle and works for you.