Working From Home - How to stay positive & productive
Everyone who works from home is different, some relish the opportunity as they can work from the comfort of their own home, with the obvious perks you can make a cup of coffee whenever you’d like and you don't have to commute, which in most cases is a big time and money saver.
However, this isn’t the case for everyone, as many struggle to adapt and stay focused in their home environment. This blog will highlight the key points on how to stay motivated and productive whilst working from home. Whether you are self-employed or just remote working, we are here to help.
Working From Home - The New Normal
Early 2020 would have been the first time many of us experienced this type of lifestyle.
The number of people working from home increased by approx. 46.6% in April 2020, with 86.0% of those as a direct result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. This increase in remote work has profound effects on businesses and employees. Companies have had to quickly shift to accommodate employees working from home, while employees have had to adjust to an entirely different work environment.
The results of working at home certainly varied, with approximately 34.4% of employees working fewer hours than they usually would, and 30.3% working more.
So as you can see it shows a variation in how people work from home.
There are some people who work less because they are distracted by too many home comforts, such as television, family, pets, or just lying around in bed, or simply because they just can’t get themselves motivated.
Being less productive at home doesn't mean you're lazy or unmotivated. It could be just because you are not organised enough.
Those who worked more likely had trouble switching off and spent many hours doing unpaid overtime (speaking from experience).
Stay Positive & Productive!
When working from home it is very easy to roll out of bed a bit later than you usually would because you are not having the commute to go to work. You decide to stay in your pyjamas all day, take longer breaks, or maybe even clock out early or maybe not even work at all.
When you do this you are not putting yourself in the working mindset, so you are setting yourself up for failure, being too comfortable will make you lazy and procrastinate, and this will dramatically reflect in your work.
In order to increase your energy levels and working mindset, you should always do what you would normally do if you were going to work, maybe you can still get up a bit later than you normally would because you don’t need to commute but be ready to start when you should and you will already be more organised and energised, you’ll be amazed at the difference in results.
Self-Employed & Working From Home
Working from home as a small business owner certainly has its challenges.
One of the biggest challenges is separating work and personal life because it all rolls into one sometimes.
Treat working from home the same as if you were in an office with some goals such as; setting yourself working hours and a weekly planner, for example, work Monday to Friday 9 to 5, and Saturday and Sunday take those days off or have some of the time off in those days.
Try to stay disciplined and not work 24/7.
You may want to try working longer hours and fewer days or more days and fewer hours, I would suggest rotating this so you can mix things up to avoid it becoming a stale routine. Maybe alternate each week or every other week, depending on your current workload.
Most small business owners will say they don't have time for a social life, or for not working all day and all night, but you must learn to manage your time effectively.
Remember you can be flexible with your time it’s your decision you’re the boss, but if you do too much you will risk burning yourself out, if you burn out you will be demotivated, tired, and potentially ill, so that’s no good for you or the business in the long run.
When you let your business take over your life, you'll begin to resent what you do, if your start to resent it, you won’t put in as good a quality as you once did and it will begin to decline.
Obviously, as we said before everyone is different and some will want to work more than others but just remember to look after yourselves.
How to switch off when the work is done.
If you are in the percentage of people that work more hours than usual at home than you normally would do in the Office, this is probably because you have potentially started earlier which is normally not too bad, but if you worked later into the evening after hours this is not always healthy, by doing this you are not separating your personal home life from your work life and it can severely affect your mental health. Your health is the number 1 priority, work will still be there even if you are not, work won’t look after you when you are tired or sick, so don’t put yourself under unneeded stress.
It's important to leave the work behind, when it's time to finish, it’s time to finish!
The quality of your work will also suffer if you overdo it, although you may not see it at the time. Often people including us have stayed up late working and then seen it the next day to find the information is complete rubbish and of no use. So you basically stayed up for nothing.
If you didn’t have time to finish the work you had to do in the time given then focus on it the next day, don't worry too much about doing it in your own free time, you're not at school it's not homework for you to do over the weekend to bring it on Monday.
However, if you do find yourself in a position where you have to have something done, or it’s a deadline, then within reason allocate yourself a certain amount of time to do it, but don’t overdo it and fall into the habit.
Your employer will not pay you for the extra hours, and you could easily be taken advantage of for your work ethic if you continue doing so.
Coaching & Guidance
If you enjoyed this blog and would like to learn more about this topic in-depth, and how you achieve better results, feel free to contact us to arrange a 1 on 1 coaching session. We will help you be more productive, and organised and if you don’t yet love working at home, you will after!