If you work from home, you know that it can be a challenge to stay productive. Between distractions like family, pets, and the TV, it’s easy to get off track. But there are some things you can do to boost your productivity and get the most out of your workday. Here are 5 top tips for staying productive when working from home:
#1 Get dressed for work, even if you’re just going to be sitting at your kitchen table
If your day-to-day is mostly spent on conference calls and Zoom meetings, you might be tempted to stay in your comfy-cozy pajamas all morning. But just like airplanes in the pre-COVID days had a dress code, so too should your home office have one. Of course, it’s unlikely that there will be an HR rep peer-reviewing what you’re wearing from 10 feet away each morning. That doesn’t mean though you should ditch the pantsuits, dress shirts, and slacks. From experience, I find that having a designated outfit to change into every morning helps me ease into my workday mindset. Start by picking out clothes that are comfortable to wear but also appropriate for appearing on camera during virtual meetings – that way you don’t have to scramble five minutes before starting a meeting trying to figure out what ‘presentable’ means! Even when I’m sitting at my kitchen table every day – getting dressed can make or break my day in terms of productivity and focus.
#2 Set up a dedicated workspace that’s separate from the rest of your home
Creating a dedicated workspace in your home that’s separate from other areas can be extremely helpful for staying productive. It doesn’t have to be fancy or expensive, just an area free of distractions where you can easily access everything that you need to do your best work. Setting up this kind of workspace will help to keep you focused as well as make it easier for you to change modes and relax once your work is done. It also makes it easier to interact with clients or colleagues without having messy piles of laundry in the background! Designing the right setup can go a long way toward boosting your productivity and helping you achieve more.
#3 Take breaks throughout the day to move your body and get some fresh air
Taking breaks throughout the day is essential for your physical and mental health. Even taking just 10-15 minutes every hour to move your body and get some fresh air can make a world of difference when it comes to boosting energy levels, improving focus, and reducing stress. Studies have shown that spending even small amounts of time in nature can increase happiness levels significantly, so if you can, try to plan your breaks outside on a sunny day whenever possible. With today’s busy schedules, it can be difficult to set aside time for yourself – but try to remember that making self-care a priority is an important part of staying healthy and productive.
#4 Stay connected with colleagues by using video conferencing or chat tools
Staying connected to colleagues is one of the best ways to ensure a successful work environment, and these days video conferencing and chat tools have made it easier than ever. Whether you’re trying to connect with an entire team or just making the effort to check in with someone individually, it’s important to take the time to talk face-to-face – even if it’s through a screen. With programs like Zoom, Skype, Google Hangouts, and many other options available, you don’t have to be in the same physical space anymore to have a meaningful discussion. If everyone is short on time, chat apps are also great for sending updates and communicating quickly. No matter what tool you use, staying connected virtually will help keep your team efficient and cohesive.
#5 Make sure to schedule time for yourself outside of work hours
Having a demanding workload can sometimes be overwhelming and leave you feeling like you have no time for yourself. That’s why it’s so important to prioritize some “me-time” during your off-hours, no matter how busy you are. Not only will this allow you to recharge mentally and physically, but it will also make it easier to stay motivated and increase your productivity when working. Plus, having something to look forward to during the day can make all the difference – whether that’s retrieving your yoga mat from the closet, treating yourself to a daily walk around the neighborhood, or building up anticipation for your favorite show at night. There’s always room for a bit of “you” in between all of life’s obligations.