At first, working from home sounds like a dream come true, especially if you’re an introvert. I mean, what’s not to like? You can stay in your pj’s all day, you can snack and nap at any time, and no one’s looking over your shoulder. In person, at least.
Except that it hardly ever turns out that way. Ask anyone who actually does work remotely. You see, while a WFH set-up has many perks, it isn’t without its challenges. With so many distractions around (kids! dogs! snacks!), it might be hard to get things done. You may find that you actually miss having your colleagues buzzing around.
Most importantly, it can be harder to keep your personal and professional lives separate.
Fortunately, there are a few things you can do to make the transition easier:
1. Practice time-blocking.
In short, make a schedule and stick to it. List everything you need to do, and identify your core productivity hours. Do you work best in the wee hours of the morning? Or are you more of a night owl? Once you determine your ideal work schedule, block off those hours as DND (“Do Not Disturb”) time.
Make a habit of focusing on work during those hours so you can get things done. Unlike a traditional office, your home is rife with distractions, so it’s important to incorporate structure into your schedule. Don’t forget to include a few short breaks as well.
Inversely, block off time for personal things like eating lunch or playing with your kids, if you’ve got them. Just as you wouldn’t/shouldn’t Netflix on the job, don’t analyse figures while you’re having dinner with your family. And if you decide to end your work day at 5 or 6 PM, refrain from checking your work emails afterwards.
2. Don’t work in your pj’s.
I know, I know. Look, I get it. There might be some days when you’ll have no choice. Your kid might be sick with stomach flu, the repairman’s due to come over, and you’ve got a mountain of purchase orders to get through. All on the same day.
However, let’s face it. Most days working from home won’t look like that. And while there’s no one to see you in a fabulous ootd, showering and getting dressed for work helps put your work face on.
Plus, your favorite pj’s were designed for sleeping and lounging. They’ll fall apart faster if you keep putting them through entire work days.
Should you need motivation to get dressed in the mornings, read this.
3. Have a designated working area at home.
If you have a spare room that you can turn into your home office, that would be ideal. Otherwise, you can commandeer a desk (or heck, even a portion of your dining table if it comes to it) and a comfortable chair. (The latter can help prevent back strain as you toil away on deadlines.)
The whole point is that you need a space where you can hunker down and focus on work with minimal (if not zero) distractions. Thus, resist the temptation to work on your bed because it’ll be all too easy to drift off. Especially if you’re breaking rule no.2 in the process.
4. Discuss boundaries with your family.
If you live with your spouse and kids, this is very important. They need to understand that you fully intend to work during your set hours, and that they shouldn’t interrupt you unless it’s absolutely necessary.
It might be a little trickier to explain to young children, but all it takes is a little creativity. For instance, you can put up a magnetic whiteboard on your office door. If you put a green fridge magnet on it, your kids can come in to chat or play. Conversely, if they see a red fridge magnet there, it means they can’t disturb you.
However, do practice patience, especially at the beginning. Your children and spouse might be thrilled to have you in close proximity more often, so it’ll probably take a while for them to catch on.
5. Remember to take breaks.
You need them for your health and sanity, trust me. When you work from home, it’s all too easy to get stuck seated all day. That’s awful for your back, among other things. So, get up and stretch for a few minutes, preferably every hour.
Also, isn’t the whole point of working from home to spend more time with the ones you love? So, go ahead and take that one-hour lunch break. Interact with actual people for a change. You’ll not only be more productive afterwards, but you’ll also be happier overall.
Lastly, whether you work from home everyday or a few times a week, delegation is key to making it work. At home, you and your family should delegate chores properly – and stick to what was agreed upon.
When it comes to growing your business from home, you can’t do it alone. And why should you? With remote work, you can get the best talent from anywhere in the world. Guess what? A lot of them come from this country called the Philippines.
Remote Staff has had over a decade’s worth of experience recruiting and onboarding the best Filipino remote talent. Whether you need a VA to help you manage your workload, an accountant to keep your books in order, or even a social media manager to engage with your customers, we’ve got your back. We’ll even take care of your remote staff’s payroll processing and government contributions too.
Click here and schedule a call back with us today.