There are more people working from home now than ever before. With the outbreak of Covid-19, it has forced thousands of people to work from home. In this, article we would like to share some of the pros and cons of working from home. Then we will provide some tips on how to stay focused while working from home.
The Pros & Cons of Working at Home
As many are now discovering, there are pros and cons to working from home. There are new distractions that can be found in the comfort of your own home. Working from home, removed from your co-workers and managers, you are responsible for your own motivation. This may be hard to master, at least in the beginning.
In the office environment, your co-workers often have the greatest influence on you not getting your work done. They often stop by your desk for a chat, they invite you for lunch and the watercooler chats. The social benefits at work are great to have, but they do have a hindrance to your productivity. However, at home its often that YOU are your biggest distraction. When you’re at your home office, no one is watching you, you don’t feel the same peer pressure or obligation to get things done. You can still be productive and happy at work!
What are some ways to stay focused while working from home? Let’s talk about a few.
Choose a Dedicated Workspace
Just because you aren’t going to the office doesn’t mean you can’t have an at-home office. Instead of working in your bedroom or on your couch, places that don’t promote productivity, pick a place where you can focus on work. Dedicate a specific spot in your home for work. Want tips on how to set up a productive home office? Check out these 23 tips.
Pretend Like You Are Going to The Office
The mental association that you make between work and an office can make you more productive. There’s no reason that this feeling should go away while working remotely.
While you are working from home, do all the same things that you would be doing if you were actually going to the office. Set your alarm, make coffee, wear nice clothes. Don’t just sit in your pyjamas, dressing nicely will help you to be motivated for work.
Google Chrome allows you to set up multiple accounts with different toolbars. You can make a personal toolbar and a work toolbar, helping you to stay focused and have access to everything you need for work.
Digital distraction or interruption is one of the biggest distractions you have while working from home. Without any boundaries, these digital tools can make it difficult to stay productive. Using your personal laptop at home, you will receive many pop-ups or notifications that you probably wouldn’t have pop-up before at work. It is easier to get distracted by these. If your computer has a Do Not Disturb option, it might help you to focus on work, and look at your notifications on your break time.
Structure Your Day
When you’re working remotely, you are your own personal manager. Without things like in-person meetings to break up your day, you may be quick to lose focus. Spending the time to plan out your tasks ahead of time will help you know what you have to accomplish for the day. This can be done at the end of your workday. Plan the next day out for yourself. It can also be done first thing in the morning. Getting your day planned out will help you know what you have to do and when. It’s important to allow your schedule to change if it needs to. On the other hand, it is just as important to stick to this schedule.
Being at work, you have your co-workers and managers there to help you stay on task and meet your deadlines. When you’re working at home, this “pressure” is less or non-existent. This can lead to your productivity plummeting. Productivity timers are great helpers. It is a healthy pressure to help you work against the clock to stay disciplined and on-task. They help to schedule our time throughout the day. These productivity times also help you to see how you work and help to refine and improve your process in the long-term. Here are some good productivity timers to help you get started.
Take Clear Breaks
It can be so easy to get focused on a task and forget to take any breaks. Don’t allow working from home prevent you from taking breaks. They are very important in helping you to stay productive. Use these breaks to get away from your desk. Go for a walk outside, talk to others that are in your house. But most importantly walk away from your desk. Give your eyes and brain a break.
Taking clear breaks are very important. But so are microbreaks. What are microbreaks? These are usually 2-3 minutes, to stretch, get some water, or step outside for some sunshine. Studies show that microbreaks can help to reboot your brain and help you gain your focus again.
Save Chores for After Work
Working from home, it may be tempting to do the dishes quickly or run the dishwasher, vacuum the floors, empty the trash. But doing so will interrupt your workflow and focus. Save the chores for after work!
Working from home has its positives and negatives. But during COVID, a lot of us are confined to working from home. So instead of thinking about the good old days of working in the office, take advantage of working from home. Hopefully applying these suggestions will help you to stay focused while working at home.