Working from home is now a lot more acceptable than it has been previously, whether you’re a business owner or not. Flexible working is one of the only positives to come out of this pandemic and employers (hopefully) will now be more open to discussions on people wanting to work from, if they can. However, it can be a struggle when you have your home life and work life merged together. I’ve been doing that dance part-time for over two years now and have learned a thing or two on how to be productive when working from home.
This won’t be your typical guide to working from home because my philosophy is all about comfort and freedom. I’m all about working on your own schedule, no matter if it goes against what the experts say! I’m always sharing on Instagram stories about my ever-changing schedule because it’s important to know that everyone works differently!
Get yourself into a routine
Now I’m not saying you still need to wake up at the same time you usually would, but routine is so important at home. If you can work at any time of the day, try working out when you work best. Are you more motivated first thing in a morning or more of a night owl? Some employers might be more flexible than other and let you set your hours.
As a business owner, you’re more than likely able to work whenever you want. Try different routines until one feels more comfortable. For example, I take Monday mornings and Friday afternoons off from client work. This is my least productive time so I catch up on admin and planning then. I also try to take Wednesdays off as a personal development day but that doesn’t happen every week.
Be as comfortable as you want
Want to stay in your PJs all day? Go for it. Rather wear loungewear than officewear? Be my guest. Want to wear a full suit? Do it. It’s all about what you want. I’ll admit pyjamas don’t help my productivity levels very much but I live for loungewear. I usually stick my comfies on and wear my dressing gown over the top.
Find your workspace
Just like clothing, you have a choice. It could be a desk in your bedroom or home office, the kitchen table, the sofa or your bed. I’m personally not a fan of working in my bedroom as it’s my relaxation zone but that’s not to say I never work from bed.
Leave your phone on loud in another room
I don’t know about you but I am addicted to my phone. I’m very easily distracted and one notification can turn into an hour-long social media stroll. Not good for my productivity levels. Instead, by leaving your phone in another room, you can hear it if someone calls you but it’s not 30cm away from your hand. In fact, you have to get off your chair and walk to another room.
Also, turn off as many notifications as you can. The only ones I have on my phone now other than calls and texts are Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and Voxer as I use these for business.
Make yourself some playlists
Whilst not necessary, I find background music helps rather than hinders my working environment. Choose whatever you fancy or pick a radio station instead. I have playlists for so many moods and it’s a bonus that you can sing along to your favourite tunes as loudly as you want!
Work in chunks
Whether you try the Pomodoro technique, set a timer for a period of time or time block your day, you cannot sit for hours working and not taking any kind of break. I use a mixture of all of the above as they work for me in different moods. My favourite technique is using the washing machine. Each load takes around an hour to do so I stick a load on, work and then take a break when it’s finished by sorting out the laundry! It’s an easier way to get chores done too!
It can take a while for you to work out how to be productive when working from home. It’s all about trying new routines and seeing what works best for you. You might find you need to take mornings a bit slower and get household tasks done then. You could be the opposite and find you like to work as soon as you wake up and take the afternoon off. However, you could be like me and like a mixture of the two! There’s simply no right or wrong way to go about how to be productive when working from home. If it works for you, keep doing it. If it doesn’t, try something new until you find that sweet spot!