Working from home.
The dream. ✨
Staying mentally healthy all the while being productive when working from home or working remotely can be quite a struggle.
There’s a lot of potential distractions available to us when we set our own hours.
And we certainly want to avoid the pajama-until-lunch-scenario.
No matter if you’re a full-time blogger who works from home, a part-time blogger who works remotely, in college studying from home or if you’re on mandatory home office duty do to unforeseen and chaotic circumstances in the world – this blog post will hopefully give you some tips on how to stay productive when working from home.
As I’m writing this, it’s March 2020 and a lot of us are working from home more than usual and it can be hard to adapt to this new way of working remotely.
Now let’s get to those productivity tips!
Even if you don’t work from home – these tips will still help you to stay focused and productive. There’s something here for everyone.
- How To Deal With Uncertainty & Chaos
- How To Plan Your Day And Stick To It
- Taking Action On Your Dreams Made Easy
Prep & Plan
Do all the prep work and planning the night before.
Be very intentional with your time.
Make decisions ahead of time and schedule the results you want to produce – and prioritize them.
This is how you avoid “busy work” and have amazing, and may I add productive, results that will move the needle for your dreams.
If you simply write down the action for example, “work on blog” as a task for the day, you’re going to find yourself deep into busy work and procrastination.
Plan down to the hour and be as detailed as you possibly can.
Don’t be vague about what you actually want to produce.
I know you’ve heard this one before but always start with your most time-consuming and creative tasks first.
As for me, this is how I usually do it.
- Write blog posts and create digital products in the mornings
- Answer emails, design pins and general blog maintenance in the evenings
I love to use my Productivity Planner to plan out my most important tasks for the day and it helps to keep me accountable.
Prep and plan ahead of time and it will be so much easier for you to stay focused and productive the next day.
Develop A Morning Routine
Develop a morning routine and start your day by tuning into your personal growth and by working on your mindset.
The way you start your day will have an impact on how the rest of your day unfolds.
If you’re in my dreamer community, you’ll know how obsessed I am with morning routines.
I mean, I wrote an entire ebook all about the power of a good morning routine.
It’s especially easy to fall out of routines when you’re working from home, but even more important to set aside an hour (if you can) to practice some self-care while drinking some beautiful coffee in the morning.
Be clear about when your morning routine ends and when your workday starts.
Wake up at the same time every day.
Some things you can do as your feet touch the floor in the morning to stay focused for the rest of the day:
- Practice mindfulness, by meditating for 10-15 minutes
- Journal to calm your mind
- Listen to an inspiring audiobook or podcast
- Namedrop 3 things you are grateful for (I love to use my Five Minute Journal for all my gratitude purposes)
- Check-in with your goals and dreams and make sure you’re moving forward
If you want more tips for things to do in the morning, hop on over to this blog post.
Stick to your usual morning routine and allow yourself to sip your coffee for a little longer than usual.
You deserve it, dreamer. ✨
We are entering the no pajama zone, dreamer.
Get dressed and get ready for the day – no matter if you’re going to be interacting with other people or not.
Show up as your best self for YOU.
The way you show up and go into your day matters.
Put on a little mascara, grab a pair of jeans and let’s go.
I know for me, when I make a little extra effort to get ready in the morning, I feel so much better and I am much more productive.
You take action based on how you feel, so if you’re feeling good about yourself, you’re more likely to stay on track with your goals for the day.
Getting ready is an excellent reset if you’re feeling a bit blah and uninspired.
You are much more likely to produce at a high level if you wear jeans compared to pajamas.
Trust me, after a whole day of pajama-wearing-fun it’s not that fun anymore and you wind up feeling lazy and unproductive (this is at least true for me).
Designated Work Station x2
Assign two different workspaces in your home.
- A table where you can sit down to focus and you’ve got the ergonomics in check.
- An alternative workspace that is more chilled, for example working from your couch.
I usually start my days at my kitchen table and after lunch, I migrate over to our comfy couch to answer emails, etc.
Ideally, you’ll have a workstation where you can actually work while standing upright to avoid sitting on your bum all day.
Keep things interesting, stay inspired and motivated by having at least two workstations.
Switch things up a bit throughout your day and find the perfect two spots in your home. ❤️
And girl, don’t work from your bed.
Have two dedicated workspaces in your home to boost both inspiration and productivity.
Limit any distractions and hang up a “do not disturb” sign by your workspace if you must.
Let people (if there are other people in close proximity) know that you’re about to channel your inner girlboss and dive into work.
Put your phone on flight mode.
You may or may not want to disable the WiFi to avoid the temptation of your newsfeed on Facebook.
Tip: Get a pair of noise-canceling headphones to drown out any possible distractions (whether it’s your neighbor’s construction workers or your husband co-working beside you).
Set The Mood
This is my favorite tip and something I never miss during my workdays at home.
Go out of your way to make the atmosphere cozy.
Put on your favorite playlist on Spotify, light a few candles and clean the space around you.
Pretend you’re at your favorite café – what’s the mood like there?
Try and bring the same atmosphere to your home office.
You can have a coffee shop ambiance video on repeat on in the background as you work.
I only just recently discovered ambiance videos and I am truly loving the rain and light thunder sounds. ????
I know I cannot possibly get any productive work done if there’s a mess around me, bad lighting, no music or if I don’t have my go-to coffee cup by my side.
Do what you can to up the coziness factor of your new home office. ✨
Have Clear Boundaries
When you’re working from home, you need to be very intentional about your time and set clear boundaries for when you work and when you don’t.
Designate a start and end time for your work hours.
- I start working at 9 AM
- I get off work at 5 PM
I have decided this ahead of time so there’s no question about when I stop working.
It’s easy to blend your personal time with your work time when you’re working from home – by for example doing the dishes while you’re on a call because they’re right there in front of you.
Be very clear about what you will do when you’re working and what you’re NOT going to do.
Don’t mix your personal time with your work time.
Be present with your work during work time.
Be present with yourself and your loved ones during personal time.
Busy bee? Pin this article for later.
You knew this one was coming right?
We all need to take a breather and have white spaces on our calendars.
It’s easy to get sucked into the task at hand when you don’t have colleagues coming by to chit-chat over a cup of coffee.
Try working for 25 minutes straight, take a break for 10, and get back into your genius zone.
Go for walks, meditate, call a friend, stretch it out or open the windows to let the fresh air in.
Ironically, to really be productive we have to stop working at some point and allow our brains to wander and then re-focus.
Stick To Routines
If you’re new at working from home due to the current pandemic, try and stick to your usual habits and routines as much as you can.
- Eat lunch when you usually do.
- Take breaks when you usually do.
- Call into meetings per usual.
- Hop on a call with your favorite colleague and work together but not together.
Sometimes it helps to have people “around” you even though it’s all virtual.
Tip: Also, try eating your lunch in a different room than where you do your work.
Schedule Your Downtime
There’s never been a more important time when it comes to practicing self-care.
Schedule your me-time on your calendar.
Your me-time is just as important as your MIT (the most important task of the day).
If you schedule downtime, you can enjoy it more and you don’t have to feel like you should be working instead.
Allow yourself to have multiple downtime sessions every day – and not just when you get off work.
Incorporate downtime and self-care in the morning, after lunch and during your evening routine.
- Dive into a good book after lunch for 30 minutes.
- Go for a walk before lunch.
- Watch a few YouTube videos.
- Check your Instagram feed.
Your downtime is your time and you can spend it how you want.
Before You Go
It is possible to work from home and be productive while staying sane.
You just need to plan ahead and be mindful of how you spend your time.
Implement one or more of these tips into your new working-from-home routine and you’ll be well on your way to a more productive day.
Even in times of crisis, there is comfort in setting up your surroundings to support you and the dreams you’re currently chasing.
I hope this post was helpful to you.
Stay safe out there. ✨