Did you know that this week (October 8-12th) is the National Work From Home Week? To celebrate this special occasion, I’ve partnered up with Logitech to bring you an awesome GIVEAWAY and these tips on how to stay productive at home! #Logitech
I work from home half of the week – and if it sounded like a dream at first (who wants to wear yoga pants all day?), it came with its own challenges. Yes, you don’t have to commute, you can make your own coffee/food and you can wear your blanket if you wanted to – in fact you don’t even have to leave it! And once you start, you realise how easy it is to get distracted, to feel lazy and unproductive.
So here are my battle-tested tips for how to stay productive, even when you are wearing yoga pants (like I am writing this post):
1. Find your productive space
I’ve found that it’s very important to have a space that associates solely with work: a space or a piece of furniture that you don’t use for leisure or for fun. In my experience, this is the best way to create the divide between work and fun – without having an office.
I’ve tried working from the bed, on my balcony, even in a bathtub – basically from all of the places my inner child wanted to build a fort in. But surprise! None of those places worked for me. I got distracted, didn’t feel productive – and found myself browsing Facebook or shopping online for a new set of satin sheets that I definitely didn’t need.
Now I limit myself to the living room. I don’t have a dedicated desk yet, so I move between the dining room table and our coffee table (I prefer the natural lighting there). I switch between them depending on my mood and the mode that I want to get into: I get super serious and productive at the dining room table and I do my best creative work at the coffee table with good lighting.
I’m actually in the process of getting a desk in that well-lit side of the room and I couldn’t be more excited! It will be very nice to have a corner that is dedicated solely to work and to have all of my wonderful Logitech equipment there ?
To summarize my experience: find a place that you like and that doesn’t distract you. And if you can get a desk there, that would be ideal, because that would be a piece of furniture that will associate solely with work. And then have fun setting it up!
2. Take breaks to stay productive
It’s been proven multiple (thousands) times: to be productive, you need to take breaks. Again, speaking from my experience, it works because you have a clear distinction between work time and play time! And so you can focus when you need to focus and you get to relax in between.
There are plenty of tools out there, I use Marinara timer – which is the online version of the Pomodoro Technique timer. And there are a lot of different theories on how much time you should work and how long your break should be. A few years ago, I stumbled upon a study that said that the magic ratio is 52:17 – and I never looked back!
Here’s my timer, that I’m literally using as I’m writing this. Enjoy!
3. Plan the day before
I’ve adapted this technique from all of the successful people whose podcasts I’ve listened to and whose books I’ve read. This seems like a little thing, but it helps so much: if you plan out your goals and to-do’s the day before you will be so much more productive!
I don’t know what it is, whether your brain isn’t awake in the morning or whether this helps you mentally prepare yourself ahead of time, but it really works. So now, at the end of the workday, I go through all of my tasks to see what I have and what I haven’t done – and I write a new list for the next day, specifying the goals and breaking them down into smaller to-do items.
Try it at home, it’s magic!
4. Get dressed in the morning
Wait, but what about the blanket? Or at least my fluffy bathrobe? Nope, put those away. You need to get dressed to get yourself into that productive flow you want to get into!
Again, this is a tip that I’ve picked up from successful work-from-home entrepreneurs. You need to get yourself in the working mood and getting ready for the day is the best way to do it! Now, you don’t have to dress up and wear a suit, you can be casual. Jeans and a t-shirt or a jumper are the perfect way to go!
Again, try this method and let me know what you think!
5. Switch off
When you’re working from home, you can take your work anywhere. But you also want to make sure that work doesn’t follow you everywhere: you need to have some space from it. Unfortunately, switching off might be challenging when you lead a flexible lifestyle, but we all know that it’s essential.
So this is why it’s so important to have a dedicated space where you only work. To have a mental divide between work and fun. This is my biggest challenge right now, and I’m trying to get better at it! Comment below if you’re in the same boat so that we can keep each other accountable 🙂
I hope you’ve found these tips helpful! What are your favourite tricks to stay productive at home?