Working from home is a one-day goal of mine. I know I’m not alone in that.
Working from home gives us the opportunity to find that delicate work-life balance. If you’re like me, we’re searching to learn how to be more focused on our work so we can spend more time with our family.
I work full-time in the corporate world. One day I wish to transition into a more part-time schedule, perhaps with some of that time working from home. I’m allowed a few work from home days, usually with special permission if someone is sick (myself or the toddler) or if I have service folks coming to my house. But I also work from home on my side-hustle: this blog. So managing my time and getting the most buck for my bang, so to speak, is vital.
Tips to be Productive and Working from Home effectively
Work from Home Productivity Tip 1: Eliminate Distractions
It sometimes feels like there are too many distractions at home. When you’re trying to do actual work, anything else can grab your attention. The biggest culprits are kids, housework, email, and social media.
The best thing to do is set up your office space that is just for working. If you’re nowhere near your kitchen or laundry room, you can’t see piles of chores calling your name. Similar goes for social media – this can be the time to turn off notifications on your phone and allow yourself to focus. Figure out what is causing productivity issues and come up with solutions.
Another great tool for your work from home tool belt is batching. What is batching? It means you do certain tasks together while you are in your productivity groove. Once you start working on a specific type of task, you’re more productive doing that task. The next similar job will flow smoother if you continue in that groove. For example, if you’re working on updating several spreadsheets, do those actions together. Then move on to the next set of tasks that are similar, such as working on writing a narrative or article. If you’re a blogger, this is especially useful. First, write out drafts for a couple of blog posts. Later, create images for those posts. Finally, go back and edit and schedule.
Work from Home Productivity Tip 2: Plan it out
We’ve all heard the “if you fail to plan” cliche, but it certainly has merit. Winging it doesn’t work for most people, though some people are absolute pantser pros (aka they fly by the seat of their pants). I prefer to have somewhat of a plan, so my day and especially my morning runs more smoothly.
Sit down and record your tasks that you need to accomplish today, this week. Then schedule the tasks out. I have this little daily agenda printable you’re welcome to use, or use your favorite planner, or even grab a page of printer paper and list it out. Do what works for you, but make that plan. It makes it much easier to keep up with your to-do list if it is written down and can be crossed off.
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Set specific “office hours” that you work, and stick to them. That will keep you on task and hold procrastination at bay. You can also pick set hours for emailing and only respond to messages at that time, keeping you visible with colleagues while still allowing you to block off hours to focus on work.
Work from Home Productivity Tip 3: Child Care
I think even if I worked from home full-time I would still send my toddler to daycare. Why? Because
he makes everything impossible he really enjoys daycare, learns a lot, and we butt heads a lot less. But when he was a baby, I longed to stay home with him and wear him all day in my sling and be able to nurse on demand instead of pumping at work.
You can also use some new toys and even have a nanny come to your home to care for your child while you get your work done.
Work from Home Productivity Tip 4: Ask for Help
We can’t do it all – we’re not superhuman. And we shouldn’t be. We all have the same hours in the day, though as moms it often feels like we have to fit an unreasonable amount of stuff in that limited time. Our bosses delegate tasks to us, and so we should feel empowered to delegate tasks to others.
There is so much we can do to streamline our busy lives as working moms so we can focus our precious time on what matters most.
Work from Home Productivity Tip 5: Learn from Others
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How do you stay productive when working from home?
>You may also like these Resources for Working Moms to help you get through your day.