When we start a new project of working from home, one of the most important things we need to consider is to create a working environment that will favour our specific needs and increase our productivity and even make time spent alone at work more attractive.
Design the right place to work.
Often, at the beginning of our business journey, we don’t have a separate room for a home office (although we can rent one however if we really consider the cost, we will be willing to stay at home.) For this purpose, it is necessary to allocate at least a corner that will serve as an office and adjust it to our individual preferences. First, all unnecessary objects should be removed from the nearest surroundings, as they can effectively distract us. In this case, less is better. I have found that even one object in sight that brings some kind of associations, e.g. payment cards lying on a nearby shelf or private notes can subconsciously creep into my mind while creating a text or listening to a course. It is worth considering what relaxes us or evokes pleasant or inspiring impressions. For me, these are the plants around me because I like to take my eyes off the computer screen to look at their green leaves for a while. For someone, it can be for example a picture or a certain colour of a wall or curtain. Maybe a shelf with valuable books, etc.
This is my workplace with favourite plants.
Set healthy boundaries for working for yourself and your loved ones.
It is good to know what times we are supposed to work, which will give us a sense of structure, just like in offline work. We should also agree on this with our family members so that they respect our working hours and do not interfere with family matters during this time. We can agree that our appearance in the kitchen signals a break and permission to talk freely. We can even set specific break times, and while this seems excessive, it can help some people to work more efficiently around the clock.
Take advantage of your highest productivity hours.
In just a few days, you can see when you are most productive, whether you are an early bird, or rather, you are getting on in the evening. Plan the most difficult tasks for that time and even reschedule the whole day. If work comes easier in the morning, you can get up an hour early or cancel some activities that delay the start of work. Remember to take regular breaks because we cannot keep focus for more than 20-90 minutes on average. The physiology of our brain will make our attention weaken, so it is better to plan activities different from our work for short breaks.
We must learn when enough work means enough.
It is normal for us to spend long hours working at the beginning of a business start-up or any project. It often seems that we have no other choice. But we need to develop the ability to rest in the remaining time. We need to implement this kind of thinking about hours after work but also during breaks. For this reason, I never bring food to my desk and when I finish a part of my work. I physically change my locality in order to mentally cut myself off from business and get some rest. I am very well served by my trips to the garden, including physical activities such as watering and weeding one flower bed. It can also be a walk or a telephone conversation (preferably also in the moving). You may play with your pet or do some stretches. Remember that our brain needs oxygen and our whole body needs movement. This will also allow us to take a mental break and remove tension from our muscles.
Establish a routine.
Making the usual habits that we will follow on a regular basis saves a lot of energy and increases productivity. When we prioritize and know what tasks we must repeat in turn every day to achieve a certain goal, we have a better chance of success. Routine will help us survive harder days when we feel less productive. It will be easier for us to do at least a minimum of our daily activities and not consider a day wasted.
Be physically active.
At first, we may not feel much difference, but over time we may stagnate and fall into a sedentary lifestyle. This will result in lower energy levels, less creativity, a poorer mood, apathy and, in the long run, health problems. That is why we need to introduce physical exercise into our daily and weekly schedule. It is even worth thinking about starting a new kind of physical activity in line with a new project of working from home. This may bring additional, pleasant stimulation in our free time. Maybe you will start to exercise or explore new neighbourhoods on your bike?
Maintain social contacts.
Working from home means being isolated so we must keep in touch with others. We can date offline with friends or maintain a professional network. We can also use technologies like Messenger, Zoom, WhatsApp or just phone.
We must take care of ourselves.
We can get into such a whirlwind of work that we can forget about our appearance or even cleanliness. This must not happen, because we will start to feel bad in our own skin. Some people work even more efficiently when they dress formally, and the ladies make up. We must find out in practice what strategy serves us. In my case, for example, when it comes to talking to prospects or clients on the phone, I feel more committed if I dress like `to be out`.
What are your proven strategies for preparing to work from home? Can you share a tip with us?
I wish you have a productive week,