Joining the army of the remote workers is one of the most exciting transitions you will ever do in your career. This is the dream, you are now going to create a home office. Many workers, companies, and small business owners choose to opt with working remotely, and for good reason. Remote work unlocks unlimited possibilities that better increase productivity, reduce operating costs, and achieve excellent work-life balance.
Working remotely used to be seen as a luxurious way to work, nowadays though, it’s a staple choice for large corporations and small to medium-sized businesses because of their endearing advantages. But sometimes, working remotely can be a double-edged sword, it can be unproductive when not properly planned.
Tips For Working From Home Effectively
1. Establish a Realistic Work Schedule
The most fascinating thing about working remotely is that you get to tell the hours when you want to work. And it would be favorable to you if you know which part of the day you are most productive. Say for example that you are a morning person, you may set your work hours from 6 AM and you’ll finish at 3 PM.
Setting your work hours at times of the day when you are very productive can have immense effects on how fast you finish your tasks for the day. And once you reach the end of your work hours, make sure to stop working, this is to avoid your overworking that could potentially lead to burnout.
2. Stick To One Work Area
One of the most important things you have to set up when shifting to working remotely is your work area. In an office setting, you do have a permanent working area and you work there routinely. To achieve the same effect, you should do the same for your home office. You must only have one area where you work. You should avoid working on the sofa, in bed, or on the dining table to avoid distractions.
3. Invest On Ergonomic Office Equipment
If you already have favorite ergonomic furniture in your house, you may repurpose it to be your new office equipment. If on the other hand, you don’t, invest in ergonomic office equipment to simulate for your home office to seem like a real office. It doesn’t have to be expensive, the point here is just that you are going to be using this equipment every day because remember, this is now your office so why not invest in quality.
4. Make Sure Your Tech Is Up To Par
Building a new home office means also upgrading your tech because chances are your everyday devices would not perform as fast and as reliably as a business-grade designed technology. We are talking about your computer, mobile devices, and internet connection. You don’t want to experience a lag when you are on a very important juncture of your job don’t you? Because poor performing tools does mean lower productivity.
5. Determine Solid Boundaries
Not because you are working from home means you can switch from work life to home life instantaneously. You don’t suddenly watch Netflix while you’re in the middle of writing that weekly report, don’t you? This takes us back to setting up realistic working hours. It pays off to set for yourself work and home boundaries.
6. Track Your Tasks
The simplest way to go about this is to have a to-do list. This simple habit of focusing on finishing the tasks that are on your to-do list would help you stay motivated during the workday. You may prepare your to-do list every end, or every start of the workday. If somehow a simple todo-list doesn’t work for you, there are project management tools like Trello that you may use.
7. Stay Loyal To A Project Management Tool
As we have discussed on the previous number, if a simple to-do list doesn’t quite work out for you, you may opt for a project management tool. A couple of examples are Asana and Trello. Both these tools offer a mobile version so you can manage your projects on the go. And most of all, they are free.
8. Dress Up For Work
It might seem very unnecessary to get out of your pajamas every start of the workday because your office is just downstairs. But there is a psychological effect that when you shower and put on work clothes, the next thing you’ll do is work. It sets you up so you can tackle the challenges of the day. We’re not suggesting that you dress up in a suit, but normal shirts and pants would cut it.
9. Stick To Your Morning Regimen
Having queues in the morning like waking up early, showering, and having breakfast helps you set up for the workday ahead. Because one of the perks of working remotely is not getting up early to prepare and commute, it is easy to overlook the benefits of a morning regimen.
10. Don’t Forget To Exercise
Exercising makes the body release endorphins which promotes happiness, enthusiasm, and motivation which are all vital to achieving greater productivity. Set a time for one main exercise and during the workday, also do short stretching sessions.
11. Avoid Working In The Living Room
The living room is where all the productivity killers are, there’s the TV, Netflix, and the Xbox. One moment is all it takes to completely ruin your productivity. You’ll say “Just one episode”, and after you’ll find yourself to have binged the entire series like you don’t have work.
12. Wake Up Early
Even though you don’t have to go to the office, still make time for your morning routine, this would get you started early so there is plenty of time to do work. Waking early also helps you sleep early which is essential to maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
13. Eat a Balanced Meal
Another double-edged sword of having the privilege to work remotely is having access to a kitchen. Let’s be honest, would you rather prepare a healthy meal when there’s a stack of chips and leftover pizza in the fridge? But you have to stick to eating a balanced meal to maintain a healthy lifestyle. A healthy body means a healthy mind, and a healthy mind means more productivity.
14. Have Break Times
Working remotely gives us the sense that we have too much time to do a lot of work, but sometimes we bite more than we could chew and we tend to overwork ourselves which ultimately kills productivity. Taking breaks might sound like a waste of precious work time, but some studies suggest otherwise. According to them, taking breaks eases the mind and boosts your creativity and productivity levels. Try the Pomodoro technique, it is a method where you work for 25 minutes and then take 5 minutes break and repeat. Not overworking yourself is a vital part of making work remote sustainable.
15. Reward Yourself
This is another psychological trick that you can use to increase productivity levels. It doesn’t have to be huge rewards, it could be something as simple as having a snack when you finish half of the day’s workload or having short work every hour or so. This idea can make work exciting and very fulfilling which leads to more productivity.
16. Put-off Social Media
Unless your work has anything to do with using social media, turn it off and schedule a time for it. Social media platforms are huge time wasters and massive productivity killers. Putting it off gets you more work done.
17. Try Working Somewhere Else
Try exploring the idea of working somewhere else, you could either visit the local park and work there or a nearby coffee shop. A change of environment from time to time helps refresh your mind and become inspired and productive.
18. Announce Your Availability
Since one of the perks of working from home is the ability to choose your working hours, it might cause an issue when your teammates try to reach you outside your working hours. When they are aware of your work hours, they know when they should reach out to you.
19. Say Hello To Your Teammates More Often
It is a good habit to check in with your teammates from time to time. Have agendas that involve all members of the team to talk about issues and ideas on how to improve their collaboration while working remotely. Also, call each one of your teammates and talk privately to talk about your personal lives.
20. Have Team Building Activities
Make sure that at least once a year, you connect with your remote team to have a team-building activity offsite. This type of activity would help improve your rapport between each member of the team and will help in making collaboration a lot more efficient. Plus, it’s nice to go out and have fun from time to time.