Considering the challenging situation we are experiencing right now due to COVID-19 outbreak, many are looking for tips to stay focused working from home. The article offers some really easy and practical tips to work from home without distraction.
Why It Is So Important To Stay Focused Working From Home?
Let’s imagine a situation. You start writing an urgent e-mail, and your phone starts ringing. It’s a call from your close friend who is now free to chat. Since you are working from home, your friend decides that you are free too, to take her call anytime!
Or it might happen that you decide to watch just one episode of your favorite Netflix web series , simply because you feel that you deserve an afternoon break of half-an-hour. And then you actually end up spending 2 hours to finish all the eight episodes of that Netflix series!
And last but not the least is that gnawing feeling of insecurity and loneliness that home-based entrepreneurs often experience, whenever a failure strikes.
Before you ask yourself “how can I be productive when working from home”, you must know what are the prime reasons that attribute to a home businesses failure. If you believe it’s the “M” (money) factor, then you are getting it all wrong!
Entrepreneurs who have turned their home-based startups into successful ventures feel otherwise.
In fact many believe your inability to set up a goal and stay focused working from home can put an end to your dream venture. And unless you learn to dedicate yourself totally to your home business, you will keep searching for the answer how can I be productive when working from home! Needless to say, it will disrupt the money flow too.
Here I am revealing 7 easy tips which I am sure will help you stay focused working from home.
Create Your Own Office Space – The Must Follow Tips to Stay Focused Working From Home
You might be wondering is it really so important to set up a home office to stay focused working from home? The answer is absolutely yes!
You won’t be able to concentrate, if you don’t have a proper workspace, no matter how tiny it is!
So, now that you have decided to work from home, simply take a look around to search for a nook or corner where you can set up your home office.
You may need to do a little bit of planning to decide exactly where and how to set up your home office. If there is no extra room to set it up, you can convert a corner of your drawing room into a cozy office space.
It is not actually that expensive to design a home office. Do an online research to find out home office decoration ideas which don’t cost a fortune. If you have a friend or acquaintance who have some idea about interior decoration then you can consult that person for home office decoration ideas.
Home Office Tips
There are few things that you definitely need for your home based office. For example you need a work table, and a comfortable chair (preferably with a straight back support) to work comfortably for long hours.
Can you operate without a laptop with steady internet connection? Guess no! You may need to purchase a printer, scanner and digital camera if your work demands so.
If possible try to remove these items from your home office, e.g. the television set, bed, gaming console, and any other furniture or home decor items which are likely to cause disruption.
And last but not the least you should maintain a time schedule and office decorum. Get dressed for your home office, maintain a specific lunch break, and so on. Sounds crazy? Well try doing these things for a month or so. You will notice how easily you can stay focused working from home!
Follow A Work Schedule To Stay Focused Working From Home
Out of bed and straight hitting the keyboard? Definitely, it’s not the way to stay focused working from home! For home based entrepreneurs, it is very important to follow a specific work schedule to make the most of every minute.
But before that you need to ask yourself what are your most productive moments. Do you feel like completing the most complicated task in the morning or afternoon? Accordingly you can plan your schedule.
To find the answer to this question “how do I motivate myself to work from home?”, you must take a close look at your business calendar.
If you are the type of person who prefers to plan everything in advance then you can do so on a weekly or a monthly basis. Then again if you are the person who is not so comfortable scheduling everything in advance then you can plan your workload on a daily basis, as well.
No matter if you are the monthly or daily planner person, I insist on creating and checking your priority list every morning. You can start your day by checking the email and replying to urgent queries. This will help set the pace for the day ahead.
Once you come up with a perfect work schedule for your home office, make sure to stick to it sincerely. Learn to respect own time and people will start respecting your time too!
Related Post: How to Start a Productive Day With Positive Vibes
Don’t Get Distracted By Household Responsibilities
The fact that you work from home, might tempt you to complete some household chores whenever you have free time. Well you should learn to tune yourself to avoid such distractions.
Initially you might have a problem completely switching out from household responsibilities. Try to change your mind set gradually. Remember your home based business is a 12 hour (if not more) commitment. And you can’t allow yourself to run the dishwasher or washing machine in between!
Limit Your Social Media And Whatsapp Activities To Stay Focused Working From Home
When you are working from home, social media is a sure distraction which is very difficult to avoid. You might be tempted to check out what your friends are posting on Facebook and Instagram. But remember such casual browsing of social media won’t help boost your business.
In this regard I would like to share a prudent advice of Neil Patel, the self-made successful internet entrepreneur. He advised new entrepreneurs to use social media only if it helps in business networking and expansion.
So yes, if you really want to avoid distractions when working from home, learn to restrict your social media time or else use it in a productive manner. For example if you know that your prospective customers visit Facebook at a particular time of the day, you can target that particular time to plan a live video for interaction and networking.
Learn To Say No To Unproductive Or Unnecessary Networking
The example I gave in the beginning would help you understand this particular point. Often people underestimate the importance of running a business or freelancing project from home. This may lead to an untimely phone call or a social invitation from a friend or an ex colleague, which clashes with your business hours.
Now you might be too polite to reject that invitation or you might be tempted to catch up with your friend. What ultimately happens is that you end up with extra workload for the next day. Now if there is a client deadline staring at you, then you might be forced to work overtime to meet the deadline. Out of desperation, you might end up committing a fatal mistake and losing a valuable client.
Stay Fit To Stay Focused Working From Home
Physical fitness is often overlooked and compromised when you decide to run a business from home. Most of the time you work at your home office, stressing your neck, back and eyes. As compared to a regular office goer, your physical activities get reduced drastically, which can lead to several health issues like back pain, stiff shoulder, headache, etc.
So one very relevant answer to your question, how can I be productive when working from home, is to engage yourself in some fitness activities. You can join a yoga class or get a gym membership. A morning or evening walk is also a great idea to stay fit.
An exercise break can boost your brain and reduce your stress level. You will soon start feeling more motivated and energized.
Automate Or Outsource Certain Business Processes
If you are trying to manage everything on your own, then you are most likely to end up stressed and disoriented. So an easy way out is to take the help of business apps, to automate certain business processes. Many of these business apps are now available for free or at a nominal cost.
The other way out is to outsource certain business activities, which you feel can be handled by a freelancer. For instance if you are running an e-Commerce Store then you can outsource the content writing process or hire a virtual assistant to help with daily administrative tasks.
Reward Yourself A Vacation
How can I be productive when working from home? The answer is by rewarding yourself an occasional break. Yes, it is very important to take a small vacation or a weekend off and return rejuvenated to resume your home business.
You can plan a location after successful completion of a project. This will give you the feeling that you have actually earned the trip. At the same time you need to make sure that your business processes don’t get hampered because of the break.
Always plan in advance. Inform your clients and remote employees about your unavailability. And yes, don’t stretch the vacation whimsically just because you can allow yourself a break!
Let Money Motivate You
So yes if money is in your heart, motivation will automatically flow in! If you have been told before that it is not right to think of money at the initial stage of a business, then you can safely ignore the advice now.
Actually there is no harm exploring a revenue generation model even if your business is a month old. The moment your home based business starts earning money, you automatically feel motivated and responsible to run it long term.
At the same time don’t take any desperate decision, simply because you feel compelled to earn money from your business.
It is actually not that difficult to motivate yourself to work from home provided you set up a long term plan and chalk out the exact actionable steps to reach your goal.
Don’t overwhelm yourself with goals which are too hard to achieve or too time consuming. Prepare yourself to take small steps at a time. This way you will find it easier to stay focused working from home.