I’ve worked from home for the last 5 and a half years, so I consider myself an expert! And yet, I still struggle with it! It’s so easy to be distracted and it can be so difficult to motivate yourself, but I’ve found that these top tips help you to get lots done working from home, whether you’re new to it or you’re an experienced work-from-homer too!
Set a schedule
Try to set yourself a schedule, but don’t beat yourself up if you don’t stick to it. It’s so easy to go down the rabbit hole of putting a load of laundry on, and just tidying up a bit here, and I might as well wash some dishes there…And where has the afternoon gone?!
Don’t beat yourself up, just turn the blinkers on and try to stick with it.
List your top three tasks for the day
Write down the THREE (yes, three) things you want to get done that day. These aren’t big tasks like ‘write my website copy’. Chunk them down into small single tasks. Look at your to do list, set priorities (I like to do this by colour coding) and pick the three essential tasks that must get done today. Then do them first.
If nothing else, while the world is going crazy and you’re juggling all your home responsibilties, if you can do those three things you’re doing brilliantly.
Your egg timer is a lifesaver.
Switch it on for 25 minutes at a time and focus on the task at hand. Take a quick 5 minute break and repeat. It’s amazing how much you can get done when you have a timer ticking away and a short period of time. I see it as a competition with myself now to see how much I can get done in 25 mins!
If you want to wear PJs, wear PJs.
There are days that I dress in ‘normal clothes’ and there are days where PJs feel like all I can manage. Once you get going with your day, usually you’ll brighten up and want to put your ‘normal clothes’ on! Or at least nice new fresh comfy clothes!
Don’t listen to the ‘you can’t work properly if you’re not wearing work clothes’ BS. If PJs are all you can manage after a series of stressful days, late nights, stomach-churning news on TV and a mountain of new distractions, that’s ok.
Set a switch-off time.
I can quite easily work and work until the early hours of the morning and I’ve done it plenty of times before (then hate myself for it the next day! These are usually the days where I work in PJs ^^^).
My husband works late and I usually work late too – the problem is I also start early! Try to set a time where you switch off your computer and don’t check your phone.
Now my husband is locked down at home with me, he’s keeping me accountable and telling me when I’m working too much! Try to keep yourself accountable or ask someone else to check in with you.
Overworking isn’t good for you (now going to repeat that to myself as I sit here writing this on a Sunday evening… I need to practice what I preach!).
Your slow cooker and meal prep will become your best friend.
I find it very hard to switch off from work (if you haven’t already guessed), so by the time it gets to dinner, I don’t feel like cooking. I make it easier for myself by using my slow cooker and having a meal prep afternoon so I’ve got quick and easy meals available, that aren’t takeaways!
Get some exercise into your day.
I like to break my day up with exercise so I’ll work first thing in the morning, have a break for lunch, exercise and often a bit of Netflix, then get back to work feeling more refreshed later on. You might like to exercise first thing or wind down with yoga in the evenings – do whatever works for you.
Set a space that is just for work.
I have a corner of my living room as my designated office. It’s perfectly placed so I’m always facing away from any mess in my living room and kitchen so I can’t get distracted! Haha.
Be gentle with yourself…
I think the most important tip of all is just to be gentle with yourself. If you’re not used to working from home and you’re now having to because of everything that is happening right now, don’t put too much pressure on yourself. It’s stressful enough already!
Try to gently settle into your new normal and don’t feel bad if you’re not doing it how it ‘should’ be done – there’s no right or wrong answer here.
How are you finding working from home at the moment?