7 Positive Working from Home Tips: Survival List
This list is my survival guide for a positive environment working from home. When I started it was obvious there were so many distractions I was going to need help. And even then I wasn’t sure. If you are working from home, teaching from home and even living at home, you might need these tips too.
Lately, it feels like things have gotten a bit crowded. Well, technically things are getting crowded at my house. With the dog and his big eyes, the phone and all the other people it became a chore to finish what needed to be done. It was in the wee hours of the night when I was trying to catch up, that I knew I needed to restructure how the days were coming together. It was becoming difficult to work at home.
The boundaries of what was work and then my other obligations seemed to blur. It happens to many of us and it’s easy to get caught up in the crazy idea of everything coming at us at once.
If you have a solid foundation, you can divide your tasks and work quickly. These positive tips for working at home are a welcome relief. I’ve used them and found that it’s super important to work when you need to and then have time for family issues. Plus you can once again relax when you are caught up!
List of Positive Working from Home Tips
Use the kitchen timer to keep track of tasks. If you're worried about time and concerned about deadlines, a kitchen timer is very helpful to keep on task. Be it 15, 30 or 60 minutes, you can control your time for working, breaks and (my favorite) checking social media. I love my oven timer I got for cake baking and it keeps me on task during my work time.
Comfortable equipment is necessary. The folding chair at the kitchen table has to go! Decent headphones, a comfy chair and a reasonable sized screen are all necessary to be productive. Remember, if you feel uncomfortable, you won’t be able to concentrate or do your job efficiently. At a regular office, these issues are already addressed, but at home you might find them super distracting if not fixed.
Tunes might be a good thing. While many people aren’t productive with the Top 40 hits on at work, when at home you can set the tempo with good music. It could be instrumental, a genre you remember on vacation or something you enjoy. And as long as you aren’t on Zoom, you can rock out as hard as you want!
Keep the pets (and other two and four legged distractions) out of the work environment. While we might be able to reason with humans, it’s not so easy with animals. Those cute puppy eyes or adorable kitty tails can be seriously distracting.
Don’t work in the living room. Humans enjoy time off in the living room. Traditionally it’s our relaxing room. Which explains why working at home is really tough when you decide to make the living room your office. It’s the center of attention and most include a TV. It’s hard enough to work at home (especially when beginning) so consider not plunking down in front of a powered off TV, a comfy sofa and a relaxing area. You won’t get much done. Force yourself to find a proper location and sit at a table or desk.
Make a to-do list before you begin. Typically my to-do list is written the night before, but you could write it anytime it works for you. Allowing yourself permission to figure out your tasks, before you begin will avoid any spinning you might encounter when you try to figure out what thing to do first.
Make sure you stay connected. You might be working at home, but you need to be involved in the office parts of the job. Knowing what your coworkers are doing for projects, keeping in touch with your boss and staying on task is very important to your job and to your focus. Don’t hesitate to check in to keep on task.
Trial and error will make the perfect environment for your working at home situation. Be patient and see how you can be most productive. It's a huge adjustment so be kind with yourself (and others) until you are comfortable.