Wearing your pajamas to work, spending all day on the couch with your laptop instead of sitting in that boring white and grey office… Working from home sounds like a dream! And it’s definitely a growing trend, especially among the workers embracing gig economy.
However, it’s not always rainbows and butterflies. Working remotely requires great organizational and time-management skills. This is, of course, something you can work on! Especially nowadays when there is a variety of free online tools available to help you manage your schedule and organize your workload.
But, you can always face some challenges when working from the comfort of your own home. How do you stay away from all the distractions? How do you separate your “office” from your work-free zone? How do you divide the time at home between work and domestic duties?
1. Prepare a to-do-list
Make sure you stick to it! Identify what you need to do each day in order to make the work go smoothly and make sure to do it. It will require some self-motivation for sure. Make a commitment to yourself to complete everything you want from your list before moving on to replying to personal messages or watching the new episode of Stranger Things. When you stay focused on one thing you will be more efficient and will deliver better results for sure! And after you have finished all your tasks for the day you can just relax and spend your free time relaxing.
2. Get dressed!
While spending the whole day in pajamas may sound fun, it’s really not the best idea. It will make you feel too relaxed and can be very unproductive. You are working, after all, so try to keep a similar routine to the one you had when you had a regular 9-to-5. Get up at a reasonable time (you’re not in college anymore, don’t sleep until 11 am), take a shower, get dressed and eat a healthy breakfast. Keep your PJ’s for the weekends!
3. Stay motivated
There may be some days when you will wake up and think – what if I just spend the whole day watching Netflix? My deadline is not for another 5 days… You don’t want to go down that road, trust us! Once you break your routine, it can be really easy to start procrastinating. And from there, you’re just a few steps away from missing your deadlines and failing at your job!
When you don’t have a boss or a manager standing over your desk and stressing you out about all your projects and deadlines – you are the one that needs to put some pressure on yourself and stay motivated.
4. Create a comfortable office space
Separating your workspace from your living space is extremely important. It may be worth investing in a small desk or even a sofa that is comfortable to work on. Whatever works best for you! It may sound trivial but a decent working chair and a desk can help you stay focused. When working from your couch, on the contrary, it may be easy to let your mind drift from your assignment to the new movie you wish you were watching right now.
5. Enjoy the flexibility
Let’s not forget about all the advantages of working from home! If you’re working on writing a text or a creative project and you feel a bit stuck – take a break. Why should you waste time sitting at your desk and not being able to do any actual work? Go out, take a walk, grab a snack or some coffee and get back to your project when you’re feeling energized.
6. Take advantage of technology
Of course, you wouldn’t be able to work remotely without the magic of the Internet. But there are also many, tools available to help you organize your work. You can use Trello or Asana for project management – both platforms are completely free! Chances are, you already have a Gmail and Google account – that means you can also easily access Google Docs and Google Calendar. You can set reminders for all your deadlines and important tasks.
And these are just a few out of the many options available out there. Depending on the type of work you do and your preferred way of organizing and managing tasks, you can pick whatever suits you best. You can also find solutions to minimize distractions, for example, if you still catch yourself checking your Facebook wall when you should be working, you can look into temporarily blocking the Facebook page on your computer. It won’t change anything about your account – it will just stop you from checking it every five minutes.