While working from home sounds nice, it can definitely be a challenge. Whether you’re a professional seeking a better work-life balance, or you’re an entrepreneur looking to minimize operating costs, working from home will take some strategy to get the most out of your workday. Below are some ideas that help me stay on track and ensure a successful and productive workday.
1. Wake up early
I used to think working from home meant making my own schedule, I was wrong. Waking up early gives me enough time to plan out my day, without the distractions of work. I have time to create a plan of attack which will help me be more productive and mentally prepared for the day.
2. Make to-do lists
I can’t tell you how helpful these have been for me. Every night, before I wrap up work for the day, I’ll create a list of the top three things I’d like to accomplish the next day. This helps me kick start the following work day and less time is wasted figuring out what needs to be accomplished and when. I can’t say which to-do list application is best, they all have their strengths, but my favorite are Trello, Wunderlist, and Sticky Notes (I use them all).
3. Get out often, exercise!
You know what they say, “healthy body, healthy mind.” I’ve found that getting out of the house and exercising early in the morning is the best way to start my day (besides a gratuitous amount of coffee of course…). Getting some fresh air early in the morning really puts your day in perspective and can give you valuable time to organize your thoughts before the workday.
4. Eat the Frog first thing in the morning
In the words of Mark Twain, “Eat a live frog first thing in the morning and nothing worse will happen to you the rest of the day.” This couldn’t be more true for me, when I tackle a difficult task first thing in the morning, it helps set the tone for a productive day and a positive outlook on the rest of my workload.
5. Learn how to work efficiently
Some days I really don’t feel like coding, or I just don’t feel like designing, I’ve learned that if I’m really struggling with a specific type of work, I can switch to another task that I am looking forward to and then circle back to the original project. This could be switching from something very systematic and left brained like billing or accounting, to something creative, or vice-versa. I’ve found that if I’m not being productive, it’s more efficient to switch to another type of work where I will be more productive, and once I’ve completed that task — I can move on to the original work with the momentum from my recently completed task.
These are just a few tips that I’ve found we’re extremely helpful in being productive while working from home, hopefully you find them just as useful!