Working from home is a constant challenge, but there's hacks that certainly make it easier! Staying productive is the main difficulty - blocking out the distractions that you find around the home.
As a #girlboss, it's already hard to keep your head above water in terms of running your business and gaining clients, not to mention the added difficulty of staying productive without succumbing to the craziness that is the various distractions of everyday life!
Here's 10 hacks that will ease your productivity:
WORK IN INTERVALS
I am a big believer in working in intervals. Working for 20 mins, breaking for 10-15 and repeating the process until the work is finished.
KEEP YOUR PETS TAMED
Luckily, I don't have any pets running around my apartment (yet), but my folks certainly do! I can only imagine how difficult it must be for #girlbosses with pets. Either keep your pets crated/caged and take them out for some exercise and socialization during your breaks, or invest the time and money in training them better to acknowledge your routine and coax them into getting more comfortable with it.
If you have a small pet, do your best to resist the urge of keeping them in your lap during your work hours - you don't want to try to type, write or design with a furball moving around!
TURN OFF ALL TECH
Even when I'm blogging (like I am right now), I find the television SO DISTRACTING! I stop typing, I start watching and I get sucked in. Right now, I'm watching The Real Housewives of Orange County and feel totally immersed.
Turning off all tech (except for the computer that I need to work on client work) is vital to blocking out distractions.
ACT LIKE YOU'RE GOING TO WORK
The best way to stay on top of your stuff is to act like you're actually going to work anyway! Get ready, get out of bed and act just as professionally as you would in an office. Okay, maybe slightly less - go ahead and smack your gum or let that burp out if you must...
YES... GET DRESSED
There's been days when I haven't had to go to an on-site office in the morning and felt way too lazy to get out of my PJs. I can't tell you the amount of times I've fallen asleep accidentally while staying in bed in my comfy loungewear. Even if this means putting your hair up in a messy bun, throwing on some sweats and a t-shirt and sitting at your desk, this is better than nothing!
Forcing yourself out of bed and away from that laptop can be the motivating factor that determines the amount of productivity in your day. However, some people really work well with going the whole nine yards - full face of makeup, curled hair and a professional outfit. Whatever makes you feel gorg, girl, and ready to take on the day!
LET THAT PLAYLIST RUN WILD!
Avoid using music players that force you to change the tracks a million times. I really love Spotify and Pandora for all my radio needs and when I really want to focus, I either tune to an artist station I know won't disappoint or my "Discover Weekly" on Spotify that is chalk full of recommended artists (about 40% that I end up saving!).
TAKE A BREAK TO EAT & SOCIALIZE
Stop! Always remember to stop, breathe and take a break to eat and socialize with real humans in front of you! I enjoy taking a two hour lunch/errand break with my boyfriend after I get home from my on-site office and get ready to transition into my home office mindset that I work from throughout the evening.
Being an extrovert, this quality human connection time is really important to keeping my sanity!
USE ORGANIZATIONAL METHODS
I love journals - I write everything down and take a million, trillion notes! I also love using Post It sticky notes for jotting down to-dos and reminders. In addition, I keep a calendar planner book that helps me to keep track of due dates and things that need to get accomplished on particular days. Using a yellow highlighter on these calendar items is how I keep track of my must-dos vs. to-dos (see more on this below).
Everyone organizes differently - do what works best for you!
TRACK YOUR TIME
Just like you would at the office, don't forget to keep track of your time spent on each task! Especially if you're working with clients, this is a no brainer. Keep track of how much you work and be sure you shut off that computer when your 8 or 9 hour day ends!
People always talk about "to-do lists" and mapping out everything that needs to be done in their day. However, few people talk about "must-do lists" as opposed to everything that needs to get accomplished.
I find that I am far more productive if I prioritize my must-dos and stick to the items that I know are non-negotiables and absolutely 110% need to be finished on that particular day. Start by looking at the must-dos before you look at the bigger picture to-dos.
What hacks help you to focus and stay productive? Sound off in the comments!