How to Successfully Work From Home
According to a 2012 article in Bloomberg Business Week, working from home includes everything but work. 43% watch TV or a movie, 20% play video games, 26% take naps, 35% do household chores and 28% cook dinner. So how can you master the art of being a high-performing contributor while avoiding that hamper full of laundry?
Follow these 5 simple rules to successfully work from home:
1. Shut off the TV
No, seriously. The “I work better with background noise” thing isn’t working anymore. I have all the confidence that you can multitask but there’s a reason my physical office doesn’t put a monitor and BRAVO TV on my desk. Try shutting off the TV and turning on music. Pandora is a great way to hear tons of variety all day for free. Shooting for the moon? Try Mozart Radio on Pandora; you’ll be super productive and make all your friends think you’re a genius when they see your playlist on your Facebook newsfeed.
2. Keep an at-home to-do list
You probably have a work to-do list, but if you’re working from home I’d recommend an at home to-do list. One of the biggest challenges for me is that the horrible at-home chores start to seem more interesting than the expense reports I need to get done. Keep a pen and paper close by so when something around the house starts to distract you you’ll be able to jot it down and know you’ll get to it after your work gets done.
3. Get out of your pajamas
Working in comfortable clothes is so tempting and we’ve all done it, but unless you’re running a fever and have to work, there is no reason not to put on something a little more presentable. Even if no one will see you the whole day, it’s a mental queue to yourself that you still have work to do.
4. Find a structured working area
Working in the living room is almost always where the wheels fall off – and naps kick in. I find the best way to work at home is sitting at a table – whether it’s the dining room table, the breakfast bar or at the desk in the spare room – sitting up makes a big difference in your attentiveness. Or, if you’re truly feeling distracted at home, head to the coffee shop or library. Some days being at home just doesn’t seem to work.
5. Take “breaks”
One of the things I love about my office is that I have wonderful colleagues who have become good friends. Our “breaks” usually consist of taking a walk outside or catching up in the kitchen, which really helps to break up the day. When I work from home I try to stay connected with those people via email, chat or even a quick call. I want to stay engaged in those relationships even when I’m not in the office– it makes longer days when I'm home alone go by a little faster. If you don’t have coworkers at a physical office to catch up with, your break could be making a quick lunch, going for a walk around the neighborhood, or checking one of those at-home to-dos off your list. Just don’t let it take all day.
Written by Sara Dannenberg
This blog post is from the Author's perspective and doesn't speak for brightpeak financial. Contact brightpeak if you want to know more about brightpeak products, and keep in mind that they are not available in all states and there are some limitations (some exclusions and restrictions may apply).