Working from home is awesome… until your child decides to lay across your desk because “it’s time to play” or your cat jumps on your lap, causing you to spill your coffee on your pyjama pants. Your neighbour is doing DIY tasks with very loud power tools and there’s screaming kids on the trampoline next door.
While many employees thrive while working from home, others will inevitably find it more challenging to maintain motivation and productivity.
We’ve talked to our staff and asked what works for them when working from home.
We’ve rounded up the top 8 tips and tricks to maintain motivation and productivity while working from home.
It’s tempting to crawl out of bed and start working in your pyjamas.
We strongly encourage you not to do this. Whatever your morning routine was working from the office, continue to practice that routine while working from home. If it’s a workout, a walk, a long shower, a cup of coffee… keep doing what you were doing.
Use the time you would have spent commuting to do something positive and life-giving. Some of us spend 30-60 minutes commuting twice per day. That’s 1-2 hours each day you can use to exercise, meditate, pray, journal, or perhaps something as simple as making a healthy breakfast.
“When I work from home I wake up, shower, make a cup of coffee and sit down to work. I get straight to work so I can get into the zone straight away. Once I hit a wall or need a break, I make breakfast.” – Sequoia, Digital Marketing Strategist at Zyber
Please oh please, do not work from your bed. Try to avoid using your lounge too. Use a separate part of your home, if possible. Separating your work space from your personal space helps you to have a clear cut-off time and compartmentalize your time. It also allows you to truly turn off when you’re on lunch or have finished work, because you can step away from your work space.
No one expects you to wear a suit or heels at home, but you should dress as if you were at least leaving the house. Us humans tend to adopt the characteristics associated with what we are wearing. If you’re in your pajamas all day, you’re most likely going to feel lazy and want to relax. Also keep your office space clean and tidy. It will be less distracting and more comfortable.
Ensure your family members, partners, or flatmates understand your boundaries and know when you’re in your work space. The team at Zyber have used Luxafor for some time as a flag system. Red flags say, ‘do not disturb me’, while green flags indicate that ‘hey, I’m available.’
Set goals for yourself and create a list of tasks to complete for the day. For some, it helps to utilise a timer set to go off every 45-60+ minutes. During the time the timer is running, it’s no-distractions work-time.
Social Media will be more distracting at home than when you’re in an office. It’s more accessible and can easily absorb your time. Use communication lines for work-related topics and set up clear boundaries for how (and when) you use social channels.
Go for a walk or do a home work-out. Being at home doesn’t mean forfeiting movement. Exercise will help keep you focused, energised and in a healthy mindset. Break up the monotony of being at home by mixing up your exercise routine.
Have a time to clock out and clock out. Enjoy your personal life – engage in hobbies, spend time with flatmates or family, exercise, watch a movie… make sure you take time to rest, recover, and re-energise. You’ll need this time to keep a good work-life balance while you work from home.
Working from home is a privilege with many benefits. Steward the tools available to you and instil a few boundaries into both your work and personal life, and you’ll find yourself thriving at home.