Working from home is an amazing opportunity but it can also be tricky. For those of us in the technology industry it often comes with the territory. Working outside of the office can make it difficult to stay on-task and many of us succumb to the sweet sweet temptation that is procrastination. So how can we be more productive at home than we are in the office?
Make Your Own “Office”
Having a space in your home dedicated to work will help you stay on task and get into the right headspace for work! It doesn’t need to be elaborate, it just needs to fit how you work best. A table, a comfy chair, and a quiet corner is all you need. For a little feng shui add a nice houseplant on your desk and maybe find a nice window to work next to. I love working on the couch as much as the next gal but having a dedicated space designed for your working needs keeps you on track for the long haul.
Have Set Hours:
Start at the same time every day and end at the same time everyday. The famous misconception of working at home is sleeping in and starting your work whenever you feel like it. The great part about working at home is choosing your hours but they need to stay consistent. Do you work best in the morning or later in the evening? Schedule your hours around your strong time keep a strict schedule.
Dress For Work:
I won’t lie to you. I may or may not be writing this in my pajamas right now…but that is what makes me an expert on this subject! It is much easier to keep productive when you take the time in the morning to get energized. Eat a big breakfast, brush your hair, and put on some nice jeans to help get you in the working mood.
To Do List:
When your boss isn’t directly down the hall from you, it can sometimes be difficult to get everything done in the way it needs to be done. Every morning before you start working, make a to do list of all the things you need to do for the day. Set goals for each chunk of the day to help stay on task.
Don’t Be Afraid Of Breaks:
Nobody can work eight hours straight and still be productive. Give your brain a rest! Set a timer and eat a nice snack, lunch, or go outside and take a walk. Don’t just take a break from working, do your eyes a favor and take a break from screens in general.
Meal Prep The Night Before:
Breaks are necessary but spending an hour meticulously meal prepping your homemade lasagne can eat up minutes you didn’t notice passed until it’s too late. If you’re going to cook meals, plan your lunches the night before like you would if you were going to bring lunch into the office.
Tell Your Friends To Leave You Alone:
Your friends and family love you which is why they love talking to you only when you’re in the middle of an important project. Kindly explain to them that between the hours of ten and six your delightful self is off limits (unless there is an emergency). Consider hanging a sign around your neck during work hours. When it’s green, you are available for idle chit chat and when it’s red it means you are busy. Practical and fashionable!
Be strategic about your work environment. Do you work best in silence, the hushed murmur of idle chatter, or with music? Keep the TV quietly on in the background…as long as it’s on a show that doesn’t always manage to suck you in. Love working to music? Spend a break putting together a playlist specifically tailored for each task you need to do that day. Classic rock for checking emails and smooth jazz for writing code perhaps.
Leave Your House:
Working at home is fun but it can also get lonely. A little human interaction can be a good thing. Call your friend during a break or spend a day working at your local coffee shop.
Stop Working At The End Of The Day:
Another trap of working at home is over-working. When you can hop out of bed and make a 30 second commute to your office, it’s easy to get wrapped up in your work. When the end of the work day hits…stop working. Catch up on Stranger Things, go out to dinner with your family, or work on your hobbies. An occasional late night is a given but don’t let yourself pull all nighters every night. Your brain needs a break otherwise you’ll just end up spinning your wheels.
Use Verto to Stay Connected:
It can be difficult to stay connected with your team when you are miles away from them so you have to work hard on maintaining good communication. Use FreeSWITCH’s Verto to maintain real-time communications with the rest of your team! The hardest part of working remotely is missing out on impromptu meetings that happen in the office, so ask your teammates to add you into a conference whenever the juices start flowing!